Ferry Strikes Kayakers on Hudson, Five Injured

Image courtesy Schmuli Evers / Twitter

By MarEx 2016-08-31 20:58:41

Five kayakers on the Hudson River were injured Tuesday when a NY Waterways ferry struck their boats. 

Nine paddlers and one guide were in boats off of Pier 79, and the ferry hit the boats as it was leaving its berth.

The captain's drug tests came back negative; police are investigating the cause of the incident, and the New York Daily News reports that they are looking into whether glare prevented the captain from seeing the kayakers in time. 

Courtesy NYPD

A male kayak company employee was the most severely injured victim and suffered cuts to the legs and a badly broken arm with bone protruding. A police first responder had to apply a tourniquet to stop the bleeding before the victim could be brought to the hospital. 

"He was lying on top of the kayak and there was a pool of blood," NYPD officer Tommy Le told the AP. The police harbor unit’s Inspector David Driscoll said that Le’s actions may have saved the man’s life. 

The name of the injured kayak company employee and the name of the ferry’s captain have not yet been released by authorities. 

Neither NY Waterways nor Manhattan Kayak Company had published a statement as of Wednesday morning, but MKC owner Eric Stiller told the New York Daily News that it was a routine guided tour, no different from a route the firm has run "hundreds of times." MKC has been in operation since 1995, and NY Waterways has run ferry services on the Hudson since 1986.