The incident happened on Sunday at 08:00 GMT. The vessel was just departing for Dunkirk when it hit the dock. All people aboard the vessel, the 320 passengers and the crew, were evacuated. Four were reported to have been taken to hospital suffering only "bumps and bruises". The passengers who chose to continue their journey to France were accommodated on other ferries.
Following the incident, a spokeswoman for DFDS Seaways, said:
"We would like to underline that passenger safety is of paramount importance to us.
"We're working hard with all passengers and relevant authorities to provide assistance to those involved."
After the hit, the ferry was berthed at the Eastern Docks and was assessed for repairs. The senior vice president of DFDS Seaways, Carsten Jensen, apologized to all passengers and freight customers affected by the incident.
An investigation will be launched by the Port of Dover. At the time of the incident the sea conditions were slight to moderate with good visibility.
Dover Seaways (IMO number 9318345 and MMSI 235010500) was built in 2006. The 187-metre ferry has a gross tonnage of 35,923 GT.