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Ferry Returns To Martha's Vineyard After Steering Problem

BOSTON (CBS) – More than 80 people were stranded on a ferry in Vineyard Sound Monday night after the vessel encountered a problem with its steering.

According to The Steamship Authority, the M/V Katama lost some of its steering capabilities during its scheduled 5:20 p.m. trip from Martha's Vineyard to Woods Hole on Cape Cod.

"As they were approaching Woods Hole Harbor here they experienced a partial loss of steerage," said Robert Davis, General Manager of The Steamship Authority. "The crew took the vessel back out into the sound to assess the situation. Ultimately the decision was made to call for a tug assist to bring the vessel back into Vineyard Haven."

There were 78 passengers, seven crew members and 29 vehicles on board.

"The crew was able to safely maneuver the vessel to a safe location and keep its position without having to drop anchor," The Steamship Authority said in a statement.

Two tug boats escorted the ferry back to Martha's Vineyard at 8:15 p.m.

Vineyard ferry
M/V Martha's Vineyard docks at Woods Hole (WBZ-TV)

Davis said nobody was hurt and the ship was never in danger.

"We'll be taking this vessel to our facility in Fairhaven to do a full investigation as to what the issue was," Davis said.

Passengers and vehicles from the Katama arrived in Woods Hole at 9:15 p.m. on another ferry.

The ferry was cleared to resume service on Tuesday afternoon.

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