Blinded by Sun Glare, Ferry Crashes Into Group of Kayakers

NEW YORK (AP) -

Authorities are looking into whether sun glare was a factor in an accident in which a ferry departing a Manhattan pier slammed into a group of kayakers Tuesday evening, critically injuring one and knocking some into the Hudson River.

Ten people in eight kayaks were paddling down the river on a sunset excursion when they were struck by a NY Waterway ferry, NYPD Inspector David Driscoll said. Five people were hurt.

An employee of the Manhattan Kayak Company suffered the most serious injury; his arm was partially severed. Authorities credited quick action by Officer Tommy Le with possibly saving the man’s life.

“He was lying on top of the kayak and there was a pool of blood,” said Le, who applied a tourniquet to stop the bleeding.

Authorities do not yet know what caused the crash, but said they were investigating whether sun glare played a role.

“When you’re driving, the same thing happens. When that sun is low in the sky you get a glare condition and where you get blinded on the road sometimes the same conditions could exist on the water,” Driscoll said.