A team of eleven investigators from the National Transit Safety Board has descended upon lower Manhattan in an attempt to ascertain what caused an Atlantic Highlands commuter ferry to crash yesterday morning, sending passengers flying into chairs, glass doors, and, in at least one case, down a flight of stairs. (All of the injured are expected to survive.)
According to ABC News, 36-year-old captain Jay Reimer and five crew members all passed Breathalyzer tests, but their blood tests are still in the works. In the Post, Rob Hrbek, a deckhand on the Atlantic Highlands' "fastest party boat," insists that Reimer is "absolutely the most qualified captain that Seastreak has," although how he knows this, and whether or not he is Reimer's best friend, is unclear.
Though the Seastreak Wall Street last passed inspection in July, suspicion has been cast on a new propeller system that was installed last summer in an effort to make the ferry "more efficient, more green," in the words of a spokesman. According to the Post, employees have been complaining about the propeller system:
Dee Wertz, who witnessed yesterday’s crash, said that just before the smashup, a ferry worker told her the captains of the Seastreak Wall Street had griped that the ship was difficult to steer.
“He was telling me that none of these guys like this boat,” she said.
With a round-trip fare of $45, we're surprised anyone likes this boat.