PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (WPRI) — Firefighters will be staying overnight at a Portsmouth boatyard to ensure that a fire that destroyed two expensive yachts, doesn’t start back up.
Emergency crews responded around 10:30 a.m. to Hinckley Yachts on Little Harbor Landing, near New England Boat Works for the reported fire.
According to the Portsmouth Fire Department, the fire started after a crew was repairing one of the 100-foot boats when it caught fire and released a plume of smoke that could be seen for miles.
Kate Moreira, who works for McMillen Yachts says she heard a few loud bangs before she and other workers ran off.
“It almost mushroomed too. Those boats have diesel fuel so there are big tanks of diesel in there so there was a few loud bangs in the beginning that were terrifying we all ran as far as we could because we didn’t know if it was going to blow,” said Moreira.
Fire Chief Paul Ford said eight municipalities were called to assist in the fire. “We had crews that were on exterior lines that had to be on SCBA air at the time because it was so smoky. So that limits our ability to work because we have to rotate crews on and off those lines,” he said.
Chief Ford said the boats are a multi-million dollar loss, and they will be transported out of the marina on Saturday.
One man working on the boat was transported to an area hospital for a burn injury.