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Electrical system failure caused PO boat fire

A pleasure boat called Serenity caught fire at about 7:30 a.m. April 28 at the Port Orchard Marina. South Kitsap Fire and Rescue crews fought flames for nearly an hour before getting the fire under control. - Steven DeDual/Staff Photo
A pleasure boat called Serenity caught fire at about 7:30 a.m. April 28 at the Port Orchard Marina. South Kitsap Fire and Rescue crews fought flames for nearly an hour before getting the fire under control.
— image credit: Steven DeDual/Staff Photo

No injuries were reported when a boat caught fire Tuesday morning in a private marina along Bay Street in Port Orchard.

South Kitsap Fire and Rescue Duty Chief Jon Gudmundsen said that at least two calls were made to 911 to report the fire around 7:45 a.m. The boat was described as a 48-foot yacht which was moored at the Sinclair Inlet Marina at 501 Bay Street and owned by a Seattle man.

Gudmundsen said that SKFR crews initially tried to use a series of pipes, or standpipe system, in place at the marina to fight the fire, but the pipes were not working.

“The POPD was a big help,” he said, explaining that the department was able to deploy its boat and tow the yacht closer to shore so the firefighters could reach it.

“They couldn’t get the water down to the dock, so we launched our boat,” said POPD Chief Al Townsend. “That probably kept other boats in the marina from catching on fire.”

Townsend said the boat was towed to the public pier directly across Bay Street from the POPD.

Townsend said the pier was closed to the public while the Kitsap County Fire Marshal’s Office completed its investigation, and until the owner could arrange for his boat to be towed.

Fire Marshal David Lynam said the fire did not appear to be either "purposely or accidentally set,” but instead was caused by a “catastrophic failure of the electrical system.”

Lynam said the boat was likely a total loss, and the owner estimated its value at $250,000.

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