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updated: 10/13/2012 10:14 AM

22 saved from sinking passenger boat in SF Bay

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Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO -- A passenger boat carrying nearly two dozen people started sinking near Alcatraz island in San Francisco Bay, but the U.S. Coast Guard said everyone aboard was safely rescued.

The 40-foot boat the Neptune hit an unknown object in the bay Friday night, leaving it with a 1-foot gash, Petty Officer Pamela Boehland said.

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The craft began taking on water and sinking, she said. But a Coast Guard boat happened to be nearby, taking on board most of the Neptune's 22 passengers and crew and summoning another Coast Guard vessel that picked up the rest.

The boats took the passengers to San Francisco's Pier 39. There were no reports of injuries.

KGO-TV reported the passengers were celebrating a bachelor party when the accident occurred.

"We were only in the boat for maybe about 20 minutes or so," Matthew Rice, the party's guest of honor, told the station. "We were coming around Alcatraz checking it out and all of a sudden it was like boom, just like a big jolt and the next thing we knew the Coast Guard boats came in and got us off."

The station says the Coast Guard is trying to get the water out of The Neptune and will tow it back to port.

The Neptune's website, which advertises it as a "floating wine tasting room," says it holds 42 passengers for wine tasting.

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