Story Tools

Date of Issue: April 23, 2008

Flash fire damages boat

A flash fire due to mechanical failure damaged a boat at the Bradenton Beach Marina April 19.

Seasonal resident Thibaut Brien, 78, was planning to take several friends out for a cruise aboard his 1989 twin gas-engine Wellcraft 280 on Friday afternoon.

According to West Manatee Fire Rescue Inspector Jim Davis, Brien attempted to start the boat several times.

“On the third or fourth time, the flash fire came up through the hatch, which was directly under him,” Davis said.

WMFR responded to the fire call at about 12:30 p.m., but the fire was quickly extinguished. Workers at the marina, 402 Church Ave., used fire extinguishers to put out any hot spots.

Brien, who winters at the Perico Bay Club and is a permanent resident of Allentown, Pa., did not require hospitalization.

His hair, however, was singed, Davis said.

“The medics checked him out,” Davis said. “There were no visible burns. He kind of walked through the flame to get off.”

Davis said one passenger was about to board the boat, but the others were not aboard when the fire occurred.