Coast Guard Responds to Tugboat Fire, Rescues Three

BOSTON – The Coast Guard rescued three people from a tugboat that caught fire early this morning approximately four miles south of Sconticut Neck in Fairhaven, Mass.

Coast Guard Sector Southeastern New England received a call from the crew aboard the tugboat Canal Deluge around 1 a.m., reporting a fire in their engine room.

A 47-foot rescue boat crew from Coast Guard Station Menemsha responded, rescuing three crewmembers from the 129-foot tug, which operates out of Bourne, Mass.

Coast Guard Cutter Hammerhead, homeported in Wood Hole, Mass., is on scene and a Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Cape Cod, Mass., is expected to be on scene shortly.

The Coast Guard and Army Corps of Engineers are closely monitoring vessel traffic through the area. The tug is not blocking the main channel.

Tugs Yvette and Winslow Kelsey have been working to extinguish the fire.

The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are also assisting.

The Canal Deluge was one of two tugs escorting a barge when the fire started.

No injuries or pollution have been reported at this time.

“Thankfully no one was injured,” said Petty Officer 1st Class John Saunders, the command duty officer for Sector Southeastern New England. “Right now we are really focusing on ensuring the boat doesn’t become a hazard to navigation or the environment.”

D1 Public Affairs

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