Clallam County Fire District 3 reported to “C” dock at the marina at 5:48 p.m. to discover a 40 foot long boat had exploded from an undetermined source. Its 78-year old owner was on board.
Patrick Young, fire district public information officer, said the explosion had such force that boats within 75 yards received varying degrees of damage.
Clifford and Julie Houser were on their boat two slips down and were knocked to the floor by the force of the explosion. Their boat sustained substantial damage with a large number of windows broken out.
They left their vessel and arrived at the site of the explosion to find the 78-year old man in the hull of his boat covered in debris. The couple removed the debris and helped the man out of the water just as paramedics arrived.
The man has serious injuries including burns and broken bones. He was transported to Olympic Medical Center by fire crew officials and Olympic Ambulance staff.
The fire district's fire boat is in process of containing spilled fuels and oils from the sunken boat. Port of Port Angeles, the U.S. Coast Guard and spill response agencies soon joined in the effort to contain any spilled materials.
More information to come.