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Fire at Hoosier Hills Marina likely electrical

Published: Feb. 19, 2021 at 7:06 PM CST
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DUBOIS CO., Ind. (WFIE) - DNR officials say the massive fire that destroyed several houseboats on Patoka Lake in February was likely an electrical malfunction.

They say the investigation into the fire that caused $2.5 million in damage is now complete.

Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officers tell 14 News they were called around 9 a.m. on February 19 to the Hoosier Hills Marina.

The fire damaged or destroyed 22 boats.

Corporal Joe Haywood says the owners of the marina rushed to clear other boats from the area to stop the fire from spreading.

“Of course, that fire’s hot, it’s moving, you have some ropes that are frozen, so they had some challenges, but they were able to get some boats pushed out and that allowed them to keep that fire contained to those eleven,” explained Corporal Haywood.

He said the fire was the biggest marina one he had seen in terms of how many boats were affected.

Indiana DNR posted the video below where you can see the flames shooting from several boats.

Dispatch says everyone was able to get out of the boats safely.

Celestine Fire Department Assistant Chief Kurt Summersheim says the bulk of the fire was put out after four hours of work.

A hotspot later erupted just after noon and was quickly fought back down.

Dubois and Schnellville’s fire departments also went on scene to assist in stopping the fire.

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