Update: Kyle Moore from the Seattle Fire Department says the fire started at 1:30 a.m. when the owner and engineer heard “popping” noises while aboard the 105-foot “Safari Spirit” based out of Juneau, Alaska. They saw smoke and got off the boat, and called the fire department. When the SPD Harbor Patrol boat arrived, Moore says the fire was so big that it was in danger of catching other boats on fire. While hauling half a dozen boats in safe range of the fire, the fire department sprayed the boat with two hoses from the dock in addition to two fire boats that were pumping lake water onto the boat. After a short time, crews were forced to get off the boat because at that point, the boat was a total loss, and not worth putting the firefighters in danger, according to Moore.
(Photo courtesy of KING 5, which also shot video here).
However, with so much water being pumped into the bilge, the boat started to tilt to one side, endangering the dock. The crews then had to begin a process of simultaneously pumping water out of the bilge while still putting water on the burning boat, which what they’re continuing now until the boat is extinguished. Moore said the US Coast Guard and Washington Department of Ecology arrived to assess the environmental risks of the fire, as the boat contains over 1,000 gallons of fuel. The Coast Guard set up a boom around the area, which is a containment system in case of any fuel or oil spill. With so much fuel, woodwork and aluminum on board, Moore describes the blaze as, “an aluminum oven that just keeps burning.” He says the boat could be burning for days. Crews are still on the scene, working to completely extinguish the fire. Moore says the cause is still in question, and because of the damage, could be difficult to determine.
Earlier: A 110-foot luxury yacht caught fire early this morning at Fishermen’s Terminal, attracting a large fire response that remains at the scene later this morning as the vessel still smolders. No one was injured in the blaze.
The Seattle fire boat assisted firefighters on the ground, who ran hoses about a hundred yards down a dock to reach the blaze.
Seattle Fire Department spokesman Kyle Moore said the fire scene may be active throughout the day, as the aluminum body is still red hot from the fire. The “Safari Spirit” was owned by a cruise line, and it was moored at Fishermen’s Terminal for repairs.
Erica in Magnolia sent us this photo of the flames shooting high in the air. The fire was visible by some neighbors on the Ballard side, as well.
The yacht is completely destroyed, and there’s no word on what started the fire. We’ll update the story as we learn more.