Lobsterboat catches fire off Rockland Breakwater

By Daniel Dunkle | Jul 08, 2010
Photo by: Daniel Dunkle A lobsterboat burns July 8 off the Rockland Breakwater.

Rockland — A plume of smoke rose into the sky above Rockland Harbor July 8 after a lobsterboat caught fire and burned next to the breakwater.

The U.S. Coast Guard, Rockland police, the harbormaster and Rockland firefighters responded to the scene. A joint effort of the Coast Guard and Rockland Fire Department extinguished the blaze.

No one was injured in the fire, which destroyed the lobsterboat owned by William Kirk, according to Assistant Fire Chief Adam Miceli.

A crowd of spectators gathered on the breakwater to watch the fire and take pictures. They were warned to stay back from the fire and the thick smoke rising from the burning vessel.

The fire was reported at about 11:30 a.m.

The fire started due to a mechanical problem with the hauler pump, Miceli said. Kirk and a sternman were working on the vessel outside the breakwater when the fire started. They motored to the inside of the breakwater, and escaped the burning boat by climbing onto the breakwater.

Miceli said that if the boat had remained on the outside of the breakwater, it would have drifted off. At the time the fire was being put out, he said, the vessel was drifting toward a large pleasure boat moored next to the breakwater.

Firefighters attempted to throw a rope around the motor to keep the boat from striking the other craft. The owner of the other boat was able to move it, Miceli said.

Firefighters believe all of the fuel burned up in the fire and did not leak into the water. The only environmental impact was from fiberglass ash caused by the fire, Miceli said.



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