A commercial ferry hauling a cement truck and a boom truck was listing dangerously after a large wave hit, knocking the trucks partly over onto the railing Thursday morning.

The 91-foot Island Transporter was one mile out from the Rockland breakwater and headed for Vinalhaven at 9:30 a.m., the Coast Guard said. The seas were about 6 feet but grew to 10 feet as the ferry headed out into West Penobscot Bay. Then an even larger swell hit, knocking the trucks up onto two wheels and against the port side, causing the boat to list precariously to that side.

The Coast Guard dispatched the cutter Abbie Burgess which was in the area and the 175-foot buoy tender ran alongside the ferry, shielding it from the wind and the worst of the waves.

Over the next two hours, the ferry was able to limp into the Fox Island Thoroughfare and eventually dock on North Haven. A crane righted the form truck, which is used to hoist and place cement forms, but was unable to right the cement truck.

“When I saw it coming through the thoroughfare, it looked like the boat was sinking it was tilted to one side so bad,” said William Trevaskis, a photographer who watched the ferry come in from his second-floor office near the dock on North Haven. The captain appeared to be struggling to maneuver the boat.

“It tried to make a pass into the ferry terminal landing and didn’t quite make it,” Trevaskis said. “It did this strange U-turn, headed toward Vinalhaven for a while, then came back.”

The ferry was finally able to tie up.

Nobody was injured in the mishap, the Coast Guard said.

The extent of damage had not been determined.

David Hench can be contacted at 791-6327 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: @Mainehenchman


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