ICBC representatives are on site in Prince Rupert, B.C. to aid ferry passengers and expedite the handling of all vehicle-related claims related to the sinking of the Queen of the North.
According to the Vancouver Sun, a Canadian Coast Guard vessel remained off B.C.'s north coast, scouring the choppy waters for fear there could yet be a missing passenger from a ferry that hit a rock and sank in the dead of night.
ICBC has been in contact with BC Ferries and has agreed to handle all vehicle-related claims. This will include expedited payments for the loss of the vehicle, as well as coverage for a replacement vehicle if required.
ICBC said in a release that its goal "is to have cheques in the customers' hands as soon as possible - immediately, or certainly within 24 hours."
The Sun reported the Queen of the North, sailing south on a 450-km overnight trip from Prince Rupert to Port Hardy along what's known as B.C.'s Inside Passage, hit the rock in choppy seas and high winds. It took about an hour for the boat to sink, allowing those aboard the ferry to get on the lifeboats and giving rescuers time to reach them.
The orderly rescue of dozens of people from the ferry's lifeboats â€“ 42 crew members and 59 passengers â€“ and the fact that no one was seriously injured is nothing short of miraculous, the president of B.C. Ferries, David Hahn, told the Sun.
"Anytime you have a major incident and you have no one hurt or killed in this type of thing, I think you always think it's a miracle," the Sun quotes Hahn as saying. "You always think, thank God, and you (are) thankful for the crew. That's what they're trained to do. They've done their job once again."
The Coast Guard is still searching the area because of a discrepancy about the number of passengers on the ferry. Some information suggested 101 passengers were on board, while others suggested 102.
From Canadian Underwriter.ca