The captain of the Seastreak ferry, which crashed into a pier in Lower Manhattan Wednesday, has been identified as Jason Reimer of Red Bank, according to a report in the Star Ledger.
Reimer and his crew passed alcohol tests after the crash, which left 74 commuters injured, the report stated. The National Transportation Safety Board planned to interview Reimer today and will complete a thorough inspection of the damaged ferry.
James Barker, Seastreak's chairman, told the Ledger Reimer was a "great guy and a fine captain" who had been with the company for 10 years. The Asbury Park Press reports that property records show a Jason Reimer with a home in Middletown with a Red Bank mailing address.
The ferry was transporting 326 passengers from Highlands to the financial district in New York when it slammed into Pier 11 at 8:50 a.m. Wednesday.
Passenger Lauren Dwyer-Mihlon of Little Silver told Patch that she observed the dock before she was tossed into seats and blanketed by fellow passengers who fell on top of her.
"I couldn't breathe," she said. "That's how I felt."
After the crash, Dwyer-Mihlon said her fellow passengers seemed in shock. "There was no screaming," she remembered. "More like shock and some people were crying."
In a statement posted on its website, Seastreak said, "We are simply shocked and stunned that this happened. We know passengers rely on us to provide safe transit on our boats — and safety is the number one concern for our company. We are very sorry this accident occurred."
With reporting by Little Silver-Oceanport Patch editor Amy Byrnes.