Three dry-docked boats caught fire at the Huguenot Yacht Club on Harbor Lane in New Rochelle early this morning, said the New Rochelle Fire Department. The boats suffered extensive damage, but no one was injured.
The fire department received the call at 6:10 a.m. About 20 firefighters from New Rochelle were on the scene fighting the blaze until approximately 10:30 a.m., said Joe Reed, chief of the Harrison Street Fire Station.
According to Reed, the fire began in one of the boats and spread to the other two. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
“Marina fires are a real challenge,” Reed said. “With the wind whipping you could have a whole row of boats catch fire.”
Donald Dufresne, who works at the harbor and has had a boat docked there for 20 years, was on the scene as firefighters worked on putting out the blaze. “Fiberglass boats, when they catch fire they’re pretty hard to put out,” he said.
Dufrense said it’s hard to say what may have started the fire. “All the boats were secure. No one was plugged into electricity. It doesn’t make sense,” he said.
The Health Department was on the scene after the fire was extinguished to check for possible code violations.
Dufrense said he and other harbor workers would be cleaning up the damage from the fire. At least one of the boat’s owners is in the area and another boat owner is in Florida, Dufrense said, but he didn’t know if they had been notified about the fire yet.