Collision With Ferry Likely Killed Whale

Federal authorities believe the death of a whale near Kodiak in July was likely due to a collision with the state ferry Kennicott.

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There were questions around the time of the incident about whether the animal was already dead when the ship struck it. Julie Speegle, a spokeswoman with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said that doesn’t appear to be the case. She says the whale was freshly dead when examined.

A necropsy found the cause of death to be a fractured skull due to a ship strike.

She says there were no findings in the report that the animal was injured before the collision.

Speegle says charges will not be pursued in the case, because the ship strike was unintentional and there was no evidence of a violation.