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Crews face weeks of cleanup after huge Mattapoisett boat yard fire

Crews face weeks of cleanup after huge Mattapoisett boat yard fire
Crews face weeks of cleanup after huge Mattapoisett boat yard fire 02:02

MATTAPOISETT -- Crews in Mattapoisett spent Saturday sifting through charred cars and burned boats, one day after a massive fire ripped through the boat yard

"Continuous explosions, which must have been cars and boats one after the other. It was quite a sight and it's really amazing everyone survived,"  Mary Pendergast said. "It's just devastating." 

The fire destroyed five buildings, three dozen cars, and more than a dozen boats.

Mary and David Pendergast belong to the Mattapoisett Boatyard. Their boat was due for repairs, but it was still in the water at the time of the fire.

"Never did I imagine that anything quite like this could happen," David said. "The families and people who worked in this boat yard are great people.'

Massive blaze destroys boats, cars in Massachusetts boatyard
A large fire engulfs a boatyard in Mattapoisett, Massachusetts. Aug. 19, 2022.  CBS Boston

Tom Tower also stores his boat here. It's one of the few that did not get destroyed.

"This is awful. They are great people. They didn't deserve this," said Tower. 

Mattapoisett Fire Chief Andrew Murray said limited water supply and strong winds made this fire a challenge to contain and put out. Fortunately, no one was killed but one man was seriously hurt and taken to hospital. Three firefighters had to be treated for minor injuries.

Investigators said the fire accidentally started in one of the buildings and is not suspicious.

"Today, we have the environmental companies working, doing their assessments, make sure the runoffs are not contaminated going back into the ocean," Murray said. 

The area will shut down for weeks as they continue to clean.

"I've been chief for 14 years and never had a fire like this in tenure here," said Murray. 

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