But the Massachusetts was supposed to be "predisastered"…

Updated! – see Boston Globe article link below

I commute in to Boston from the South Shore by boat. Its much more relaxing than driving, and the each boat has a bar. How can you go wrong. Out of all of the commuter boats in the fleet, I prefer to take the Massachusetts. It’s an older monohull boat, and does not go very fast. Hence, the “Type As” stay away from it in droves. I love it.

Last Summer, the Massachusetts had engine trouble and one of the engines set on fire in the middle of Boston harbor with commuters on-board. Everyone got off safely, and the Mass had to be overhauled.

Massachusetts Burning

It was out of commission for close to a year, and just started making commuter runs about a month ago. I have been making a point of getting up extra early to take it in on the 6:50 AM run, and taking it home on the 6:00 PM run.

This morning, it was very foggy in the harbor. At one point the engines went into full reverse as we almost missed the gap under the Long Island bridge and had to back up to correct course. We all had some laughs (“Ooops – lousy aim!”) and we slowly carried on.

At roughly 7:20, the engines again went into full reverse as we almost ran into a small fishing boat. Visibility could not have been more than 20-30 feet. Suddenly someone started screaming “ohmygodohmygodohmygod!” and we could see the bow of the Laura, another of the commuter boats, heading for us. The engines kicked up, but we couldn’t back up fast enough. The bow of the Laura came through the window, slightly starboard. People were jumping out of the way, and some people had grabbed others to get them out of the path of the Laura’s bow. It came through the window and wall roughly 10 feet, knocking over seats, ripping a hole roughly 5 feet wide. The woman next to me was in hysterics, screaming that she was pregnant. We all started grabbing life vests, and I ran to the back of the boat to help hand them out.

Things calmed down in another 5 or so minutes. We found out that luckily no one was seriously hurt – just a few cuts from the flying glass. The hole was high enough that we were not in danger of taking on water, so we proceeded (very slowly) to Rowes Wharf, which was only a few hundred feet away from where the accident occurred.

Another fun day commuting.

Video:

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About Kevin

Kevin Jarnot is a technologist who lives just South of Boston, MA. He is currently employed as Chief Technology Officer at DebtX, a financial services technology company based in Boston.
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3 Responses to But the Massachusetts was supposed to be "predisastered"…

  1. Paul Weitz says:

    Good for you for helping out in the middle of a crisis. I always wonder how I will respond in a situation like that, depending on the level of crisis. I know I’m good at getting movie projectors fixed when no one else in the theater is able/willing to get out of their seat. 🙂

  2. Kevin says:

    Paul – you have performed an invaluable service for the betterment of all. 🙂

  3. Samantha Brock says:

    Hehe! Good work!

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