A 40-foot dragger sank after it was struck by another boat in dense fog not far from the Montauk Inlet Saturday morning.
Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound received a report of a collision about a quarter-mile from the inlet at about 6:30 a.m. The commercial fishing vessel Petrel, based out of Montauk, had been hit by the Chaos, a 40-foot powerboat, according to Petty Officer Anthony Pappaly, a Coast Guard public information officer. The crash occurred just north of the Bell buoy, where the commercial fishermen were getting ready to put out their net.
The two people aboard the Petrel, the captain and his first mate, were taken aboard the Chaos as their boat began to sink into the harbor. A photograph circulating on Facebook Sunday, taken from the Chaos right after the crash and before the Petrel sank, showed major damage to the Petrel’s bow.
Most of my facebook friends are fisherman.
This is a friends small dragger, which was ran into/ over yesterday in the…
Friends of the commercial fishermen said the other boat was going 30 knots, which is just under 35 miles per hour on the road. The Coast Guard spokesman said they did not have information about how fast the boat was going, but that visibility was low.
The Chaos, which is based out of Connecticut, also suffered some damage and was towed to the harbor, where a marine investigation began. East Hampton Town police and Coast Guard Station Montauk both cited the operator with negligent operation of a vessel, a misdemeanor.
While the operator was charged, Pappaly said it was not necessarily the cause for the collision. He said the crash was still under investigation, and he declined to release the operator’s name.
Petrel’s captain, whose name was also not released, suffered a shoulder injury and was taken to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital, where he was treated and released, Pappaly said. None of the several people aboard the Chaos were injured.
The owners of the Petrel are working with a commercial salvage company to recover the boat. It poses no hazard to other boats, according to the Coast Guard, which is monitoring any environmental issues.
The Chaos will remain in port until necessary repairs can be made, the Coast Guard petty officer added.