Firefighters rescued hundreds of cruise passengers from the Edmonton Riverboat after it became stranded on the North Saskatchewan River over the weekend.
According to CBC, crews needed several hours to evacuate nearly 300 people when a swift current prevented the boat from returning to its dock at Edmonton’s Rafters’ Landing late Saturday night.
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“The boat was weighed down to the point where, even though it was going full-speed ahead, we were just matching the speed of the current and just floating in the same position,” Hayden Wilson told CBC. “It took a while for the passengers to catch on, seeing as it was a booze cruise.”
“The crew did a great job of establishing that there is no real danger, we’re just fighting the current and can’t get past it,” Wilson added.
Melanie Marcoux also praised the crew’s handling of the situation.
“It was actually okay. They were very accommodating, and they did offer free food after a while,” she told Global News. “They were like, ‘Yeah, hamburgers, hot dogs for everyone, we are really sorry.'”
No one was injured during the incident, however, the riverboat’s Sunday cruise scheduled for 4 p.m. was canceled to allow crew members time to rest.
“Typically we do travel up to the Walterdale Bridge and back, it’s just every once and a while we will have the right conditions to head down, and I think as we were heading down the conditions felt good, and as we were coming back in the later evening winds picked up and the current got a little faster,” Edmonton Riverboat’s Nova Andrews told Global News.