Reports Of Injuries After Ferry Accident Near Bald Head Island

Dec 17, 2013

The Bald Head Island Ferry, Run Aground in the Cape Fear River
Credit U.S. Coast Guard

The U.S. Coast Guard is reporting 13 injuries after a ferry ran aground near Bald Head Island, Tuesday morning.

The 64-foot ferry was carrying 56 people went it ran aground Battery Island, an island at the mouth of the Cape Fear River, between Southport and Bald Head Island.

The Coast guard transported the passengers, by boat, back to Southport.

None of the injuries appeared to be life-threatening, according to Coast Guard Commander Joseph Dufresne. Despite earlier reports, he says, the Coast Guard did not receive any calls for passengers thrown from the boat, into the water. 

"We have investigators on scene to assess the damage to the ferry," said Dufresne, "[and to] help develop a salvage plan, along with the operators, to re-float the vessel and get it to shore. Also to investigate the circumstances of the casualty and find out what happened."

The team will likely have to wait until high-tide to attempt to move the boat. It will also require a Coast Guard inspection before it can be put back into service.

The ferry is operated by Bald Head Island Ltd., a privately-owned property management company. Joyce Fulton, the company's Director of Communications, said no action has been taken with regards to the staff, as that would be premature without the results of the Coast Guard's investigation.