Passengers on the Cetacea were undoubtedly happy to reach Boston Harbor after the boat’s propeller snagged on some lines during a whale-watching excursion about 15 miles off the coast.

Mark Garfinkel • Boston Herald,

Whale-watching cruise turned into an overnight ordeal

  • Article by: Michael Muskal
  • Los Angeles Times
  • July 30, 2014 - 7:18 PM

It wasn’t exactly “Gilligan’s Island,” but for 163 people aboard the aptly named ­Cetacea, it was a whale of tale.

The Cetacea, a whale-watching boat operated by Boston Harbor Cruise, returned safely to its Boston berth at 8 a.m. Tuesday after it was stranded overnight because some lines got tangled in its propeller, said Petty Officer Ross Ruddell, spokesman for the First Coast Guard District in Boston.

“It is back safely and is safely moored with no injuries to anyone,” Ruddell said. The passengers and crew had food and drink, as well as blankets to keep warm. Medical personnel were brought to the boat to be on hand if needed, he said.

In the television series, the famous S.S. Minnow (named for a tiny fish), goes off for a jaunt and runs into an unexpected storm that strands the passengers and crew on an unknown desert island. The comedy TV series ran from 1964 to 1967 but lives on somewhere on the high seas of reruns.

The Cetacea, named for the group of marine mammals including whales and dolphins, was heading for hours of watching whales when it got stuck in some lines connected to an offshore oil facility. The sea was too choppy to allow the passengers to be transferred to another vessel, according to the Coast Guard, so passengers had to wait until the boat was freed and could return to port.

The passengers will receive a refund on their $50 ticket, a $100 gift card for a future Boston Harbor Cruise and $500 in cash for their troubles, spokeswoman Sheila Green told the Boston Globe.

“I don’t know they saw any whales,” Ruddell said. “I would hope so.”

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