Firefighters tackle boat blaze in Oulton Broad

The boat fire in Oulton Broad. Picture: East Coast Boating

The boat fire in Oulton Broad. Picture: East Coast Boating - Credit: Archant

An investigation will begin tomorrow into why a 30ft pleasure boat caught fire while moored in a town lake.

The boat fire in Oulton Broad. Picture: East Coast Boating

The boat fire in Oulton Broad. Picture: East Coast Boating - Credit: Archant

Firefighters were called to Sea Lake Road, in Oulton Broad, at 3.38pm yesterday after plumes of thick black smoke became visible from as far away as the Bascule bridge, approximately two miles up Lake Lothing.

When they got there, they found the rear end and the main structure of the Super Moonraker 36 vessel alight - with fears the flames could spread to other boats moored nearby.

Paul Field, station commander for Lowestoft South Fire Station, said: 'Our initial actions were to prevent the fire from spreading to adjoining vessels. There were two or three boats quite close.

'There was large, black smoke and flames and to start with we were fighting from adjoining jetties.'

The boat fire in Oulton Broad. Picture: East Coast Boating

The boat fire in Oulton Broad. Picture: East Coast Boating - Credit: Archant


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Because the fire was more difficult for crews to reach, it took some time before they could get on board to tackle the remainder of the blaze with hosereels.

With two LPG cylinders on board, they also had to use poly booms - which prevent oil from spreading into the water into the water - for environmental protection should there be any leakages.

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No-one was on board the boat at the time and firefighters were attempting to make contact with the owner last night after extinguishing the blaze by 5.39pm.

Firefighters will return to the scene tomorrow to begin their investigations into the cause. Four crews from Lowestoft South and one from Lowestoft North attended the incident.

Onlookers gathered to watch the scene unfold from nearby Bridge Road.

Trevor Manning took photos of the billowing smoke from the Bascule bridge in the centre of Lowestoft at 3.45pm, saying there was a 'heavy smell of burning rubber'.

The boat is one of only six of the Super Moonraker series ever made, after a company bought some half-finished moulds from the original Moonraker series which had stopped being made in 1980.

Original Moonraker boats tend to cost around £35,000, although a Super Moonraker is rarer and likely to cost more.

Did you see the fire? Email andrew.papworth@archant.co.uk

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