Homer Alaska - News

Story last updated at 4:59 PM on Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Fire breaks out on boat in harbor

By McKibben Jackinsky
Staff Writer


Photo by McKibben Jackinsky, Homer News

An early morning fire caused damage to the forward half of the F/V Christine K.

The sharp eyes of Salty Dawg patrons drew attention to a late-night fire aboard the F/V Christine K on Monday, drawing a response from the Homer Harbormaster's Office, Homer Volunteer Fire Department and Kachemak Emergency Services.

"Initially somebody at the Salty Dawg saw the smoke," said Homer Fire Chief Bob Painter of the 1:31 a.m. notification. "Then it was confirmed by the harbor office, who pinpointed the location off Ramp 3 on the JJ float."

The 48-foot vessel is owned by Frank Kashevarof. His son was on it at the time the fire began and was later treated for smoke inhalation, according to Painter and Deputy Harbormaster Matt Clarke. Cause of the fire is under investigation.

"Apparently, what we were told, is that they were doing some work on the boat, but we don't know what kind of work it was," said Painter.

After the fire was under control, about 5 a.m., the decision was made to tow the Christine K to the barge ramp to allow for further dewatering and further fire overhaul purposes, said Clarke.

Damage to the vessel was mostly in the forward half.

"The whole cabin, flying bridge and rigging, everything melted and collapsed into the deeper portion of that area, the fo'c'sle and the bottom of the galley floor," said Clarke.

"The fish hold and the lazarette are in tact and essentially unharmed."

A 10-inch hole also had to be cut in the hull in order to accommodate firefighting equipment.

Two other vessels — the 42-foot Highliner and the 40-foot Leah Kay — were near the fire and sustained some damage as a result.

Clarke coordinated efforts with Kashevarof, Mako's Water Taxi and Northern Enterprise to have the vessel hauled out of the water Tuesday afternoon.