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Friday, July 1, 2005 - Page updated at 08:14 AM

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Vancouver ferry runs aground

The Associated Press

WEST VANCOUVER, B.C. — A 457-foot ferry lost power while docking yesterday and mowed through dozens of boats at a marina, running aground and leaving hundreds of passengers stuck aboard at one of British Columbia's busiest ferry terminals.

No one was injured when the Queen of Oak Bay, with 544 passengers and 189 vehicles on board, smashed into Sewell's Marina, adjacent to the Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal, B.C. Ferries spokeswoman Deborah Marshall said.

The accident, however, smashed pleasure boats docked on two piers at the marina and closed the terminal at the start of the long Canada Day weekend. Passengers and their vehicles could not be unloaded from the ferry until authorities made sure there were no casualties at the marina and until it could be determined that the ferry could be safely refloated.

The ferry had returned to service in mid-June after undergoing an extensive overhaul.

The cause of the accident was not known. However, Marshall said the Queen of Oak Bay and its sister ships, the Queen of Cowichan and the Queen of Coquitlam, have long had problems with their clutches.

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