OSLO, Norway (AP) _ A harpooned whale fighting for its life rammed the Norwegian boat that shot it, breaking the vessel's mast and hurling two crewmen into the icy waters.

The whale escaped, but it was unclear if it survived, the Oslo newspaper Verdens Gang reported Tuesday. The two crewmen, one of whom suffered cracked ribs, were rescued.

According to the paper, the whaling boat, the Bolga, was off Norway's northern tip on Monday when it harpooned a minke whale, which can grow up to 30 feet in length.

The whale then rammed the 53-foot-long wooden boat. The two crewmen, who had been spotting whales from the crow's nest near the tip of the mast, were thrown into the ocean, about 425 miles north of the Arctic Circle.

Norway resumed commercial whaling in 1993, despite a ban imposed by the International Whaling Commission.