I got an email this morning reporting that a passenger on the Superferry called federal enforcement officials to say the ferry had hit a whale at about 7:25 or 7:30 a.m. today off Penguin Bank, and the boat had come to a screeching halt before resuming travel.
I checked in with federal agent Bill Pickering, who confirmed that a call was made to the NOAA hotline. "We're looking into it to find out if it's true or not," he said, noting that the ship's passengers and crew, as well as the caller, will be interviewed when the boat docks at Kahului Harbor.
I'll keep you posted.
Update: OK, so according to The Advertiser:
Hawaii Superferry said it used standard operating procedures today to avoid humpback whales on its morning voyage from Honolulu to Kahului Harbor.