Things that go bump in the night: Two ferries collide in Ketchikan, damage minimal

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Early Friday morning the M/V Kennicott collided with the M/V Hubbard while docking in Ketchikan. Alaska Marine Highway System personnel are conducting a thorough damage assessment, and initial reports describe minimal damage to the Hubbard, while the Kennicott suffered a damaged sponson and window.

The U.S. Coast Guard was notified of the event, which occurred at 4:25 am, and an internal investigation is underway. Neither ship is currently in revenue service, and no crew members were injured during the incident, Alaska Department of Transportation reports.

The Kennicott just entered its annual overhaul period, and the Hubbard is scheduled to begin a capital improvement project to construct crew quarters during 2022. AMHS does not anticipate the damage from today’s incident will impact project timelines or return to service dates for either vessel.

The Kennicott is the workhorse of the Alaska Marine Highway and just delivered its last passengers before its Jan. 14 overhaul. It will be out of service until at least April, leaving the shrinking ferry system with one less asset to move people, cars, fish, and goods around coastal communities.

16 COMMENTS

  1. As a U.S. Coast Guard Veteran I find collisions like this disturbing. There should be at least 3 crewmembers on each vessel actively watching and communicating what they see. Several people need to receive their walking papers.

  2. The captain must have been at the helm. Usually, the highest in command is the worst driver. WHY is that?

  3. Was a drug test or alcohol breathalyzer test administered by the USCG (or other enforcement agency) to the person actually at the helm of the M/V Kennicott within 2 hours of the incident?

  4. The bigger the road system, the less need for ferries that are old, inefficient, and an overall waste of money.
    Outsource them.

  5. “Ferries” — that’s homophobic! (and probably misogynistic, racist, and anti-non-cis-gendered, to boot).
    .
    The preferred word today is “water-borne equity-harmonizing transport of people of all races, ethnicities, nationalities, and sexual orientations, including each of the 47 genders”.

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