Campbell River man survives collision with whale

Humpback whale breached in front of his 22-foot Grady White power boat

A Campbell River man is recovering from facial surgery after his boat collided with a humpback whale in the waters off Sayward May 15.

Ray Boyd still faces expensive dental work after a humpback whale breached in front of his 22-foot Grady White power boat and sent the operator flying.

“Bang! I felt the collision and I went flying through the air,” Boyd told CTV.

He then struck some part of the boat and was briefly knocked unconscious. When he came to, his vessel was barrelling down the strait, luckily, in a straight line. This allowed him to regain control of the boat and return to shore safely.

Boyd lost teeth in the encounter and has a broken jaw and a black eye. He now also faces $10,000 worth of reconstructive surgery.

Biologists, meanwhile, are concerned the whale may be injured and therefore a continued hazard to boaters.

Humpback whales are becoming more frequent visitors to the inner waters of Vancouver Island due to a reviving population. Boaters are being warned to keep an eye out for the massive sea mammals.