Whale-watching boat runs aground at Hancock Point

The whale-watching boat Tails of the Sea, seen here around 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, ran aground on Hancock Point sometime late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning after high winds are believed to have caused a mooring line to break.
Courtesy photo
The whale-watching boat Tails of the Sea, seen here around 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012, ran aground on Hancock Point sometime late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning after high winds are believed to have caused a mooring line to break.
Posted Sept. 19, 2012, at 5:43 p.m.
Last modified Sept. 19, 2012, at 6:37 p.m.
The whale-watching boat Tails of the Sea ran aground on Hancock Point sometime late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning after high winds are believed to have caused a mooring line to break.
The whale-watching boat Tails of the Sea ran aground on Hancock Point sometime late Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning after high winds are believed to have caused a mooring line to break.

SOUTHWEST HARBOR, Maine — A 110-foot whale-watching boat moored near Hancock Point broke loose sometime late Wednesday or early Thursday and washed up onto rocks near the point.

U.S. Coast Guard officials believe the high winds overnight worked to break the mooring line on the vessel. No one was aboard at the time.

The grounding was reported by residents of the area at about 7:30 a.m.

The boat, Tails of the Sea, lists its home port as Plymouth, Mass., but Bosun’s Mate Jeremy Graffam of the Southwest Harbor Coast Guard station said the vessel has been moored off Hancock Point for the summer and, apparently, taking passengers on whale-watching trips, he said.

The boat ran aground at high tide.

“It got pushed onto the rocks pretty high,” Graffam said, “and when the tide went out, it just set down.”

Coast Guard officials drove to the area and were prepared to use booms to contain any fuel spills, but none was observed. The state Department of Environmental Protection also sent staff.

The boat’s owners waited for the tide to rise again, and a small boat was able to pull it free of the rocks, Graffam said. No substantial damage was observed in the hull.

“It was able to make it to the marina under its own power,” he said, traveling to Southwest Harbor where a boatyard was expected to inspect and repair the vessel.

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