Anglers take to life raft as boat sinks

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As a guest on a deep-sea chartered fishing trip, Gary Mertz was told the striped bass being caught off New Jersey's Barnegat Light Inlet were between 35 and 50 pounds.

Moments into the excursion, however, the 38-foot boat he and five others were aboard ran aground and began taking on water before sinking, the Coast Guard reports. The impact with the rock tore a hole in the hull.

"We were just talking on the back of the boat and it just threw everybody, threw me onto the ground, threw another guy into a cabinet, and all the alarms started going off in the boat," Mertz, 52, told the Express-Times.

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