Dad and two children escape intense fire on powerboat at Arne

Despite suffering from shock and cold, two boys and their father managed to make it ashore at Arne after abandoning their boat that had caught alight in Poole Harbour in Dorset.

Emergency services including Swanage Coastguard were called to reports of a rib boat ablaze with one adult and two children on board just after 6 pm on Sunday 7th May 2023.

Boat on fire
Wareham Fire Station

The emergency services arrived and saw that the boat was still ablaze

Made it to the mud shoreline

Poole Lifeboat Station launched both their boats and headed towards Russel Quay on the Arne peninsula near to the Wareham Channel in Poole Harbour.

When the Atlantic lifeboat arrived, the crew found the two children and their father had escaped the burning boat, which was still intensely on fire, and made it to the mud shoreline at Russel Quay.

Poole D class lifeboat
Poole Lifeboat Station

Poole Lifeboat Station launched both boats including the D-Class

Poole d class lifeboat rescue after boat catches alight
Poole Lifeboat Station

Volunteer lifeboat crew member went ashore to check on the children and their father who had made it to the shore at Arne

“Covered in mud, wet and cold but okay”

Poole Lifeboat Station reported:

“A crew member went ashore to check that everyone was okay and they were, albeit shaken, covered in mud, wet and cold but okay.

“The crew member carried the children back across the mud and through the shallows into the lifeboat and dad followed. The casualties were then evacuated, taken back to the station, to get warmed up and given clean dry clothes.

“The D class lifeboat stood by as the stricken vessel burnt down to the water line and sank, there was nothing that could be done to salvage the vessel.”

Boat on fire
Swanage coastguard

Poole Harbour Commissioners vessel arrived to check on any pollution

Burnt out boat
Poole Lifeboat Station

The powerboat was completely burnt out

No pollution to be seen

Wareham and Poole Fire Stations also sent appliances and the Poole Harbour Commissioners vessel arrived to check that there was no pollution into the harbour, however the fire was so intense it had burnt off any fuel.

With the fire extinguished, all the emergency services were able to return to their bases, with the Poole Harbour Commissioners expected to return on Monday 8th May 2023 to check on the remains of the burnt out hull.

Watch RNLI Poole video of rescue

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