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37 injured as New York ferry hits dock

world Updated: May 09, 2010 07:34 IST

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At least 37 people were injured when a ferry boat, carrying 252 passengers and 18 crew members, struck a pier as it approached the dock in New York's Staten Island, authorities have said.

The brakes failed Saturday on the Andrew J. Barberi ferry boat as it hit the dock of the St. George Ferry Terminal on Staten Island at about 9.25 a.m. local time, Janette Sadik-Khan, commissioner of the city's department of transportation, told NY1 television channel.

"It appears to be a mechanical problem, there was not an ability to pull back the throttle as it approached the dock," Sadik-Khan was quoted as saying by Xinhua.

Only one person was critically injured, she said, adding that the other injuries were minor cuts and bruises.

The ferry had earlier been involved in another accident in 2003 that killed 11 people. The boat's pilot - Richard Smith - lost consciousness while at the ship's controls in the 2003 crash. He pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced to 18 months in prison.