Over 100 passengers on board a Cheung Chau-Aberdeen double-decker ferry were evacuated yesterday after the vessel was found to be taking on water.

A queue of regular Lamma ferries, rescue boats and police boats. Photo: Lamma-Gung, Lamma.com.hk.

The incident occurred at around 6pm on Sunday. The ferry, which departed from Cheung Chau bound for Aberdeen, had to make an emergency docking at the Pak Kok Tsuen pier on Lamma Island.

Emergency evacuation of the Cheung Chau ferry which was not designed for heads-on docking. Photo: Lamma-Gung, Lamma.com.hk.

According to passengers, the water seepage caused an electrical shutdown.

Water is pumped out of the engine room. Photo: Lamma-Gung, Lamma.com.hk.

A female passenger said that the crew had asked them to put on life vests. “We were all very scared – we didn’t know if the vessel would sink,” she told Apple Daily. Another said that there was difficulty in docking, due to the strong wind and waves.

Water is pumped out of the engine room. Photo: Lamma-Gung, Lamma.com.hk.

Passengers were evacuated and transferred to a different ferry. They then continued their journey to Aberdeen.

Photo: Lamma-Gung, Lamma.com.hk.

No injuries were reported.

Cheung Chau passengers wait for another ferry to continue their voyage. Photo: Lamma-Gung, Lamma.com.hk.

The Cheung Chau-Aberdeen route, managed by Tsui Wah Ferry Services HK Ltd, had been in operation for two months. Seven ferries depart from Cheung Chau and Aberdeen every day.

The Aberdeen-Cheung Chau ferry makes an emergency docking at Lamma. Photo: Lamma-Gung, Lamma.com.hk.

Last month, a Lamma Island-Central ferry carrying 30 passengers collided with a mainland steamer. While the vessel’s bow and hull were damaged, no one was injured in the incident.

On National Day in 2012, a Hong Kong & Kowloon Ferry-operated Lamma passenger ferry and a Hongkong Electric Company-owned vessel collided off Yung Shue Wan, killing 39 people in one of Hong Kong’s deadliest ferry accidents.

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Karen Cheung

Karen is a journalist and writer covering politics and legal affairs in Hong Kong for HKFP. She has also written features on human rights, public space, regional legal developments, social and grassroots activism, and arts & culture. She is a BA and LLB graduate from the University of Hong Kong.