'Lucky' escape as humpback whale jumps from sea near Boston and lands on fishing boat

·2-min read

Fishermen were "lucky" to escape injury when a whale jumped on to a boat off the coast of the US.

Footage from over the weekend shows the humpback leaping clear of the ocean and landing on a small fishing vessel.

Chad Hunter, the harbourmaster at Plymouth, 30 miles south of Boston, Massachusetts, told NBC news the 19-foot vessel sustained only a little damage and was able to return to shore in a seaworthy state.

He said: "The boat was in the right place at the wrong time. This could have been much worse for all involved.

"Children like to lean over the side of the boat to watch the fish so it is very lucky that nobody got hurt here. An incident like this is pretty rare but very dangerous to boaters."

Witness Ryder Parkhurst said: "All of a sudden, full breach, 10 feet out of the water, slams on top of his guy's boat, like his bow goes down, basically, into the water, engine out, full thing pops off, whale rolls over the side of it, totally fine, but his boat was messed up.

"It was insane, the guy was just in the wrong place at the wrong time, that's all. Pops up, bang...right on the bow of the guy's boat."

He added: "I just saw the boat go freaking flying, it was crazy. It was nuts. I couldn't believe the thing was still floating."

The incident on Sunday came following another on Friday, when a whale nudged a separate fishing boat.

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Port authorities had been monitoring the area for whales, as a large number of fish had attracted both fishing vessels and the marine mammals.

The harbourmaster is using the incident to remind people to stay at least 100 yards away from whales.

Environmental police are investigating if there was a violation of any wildlife protection law.

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