Dock and Boats Detach During Tuesday Morning Storm

During Tuesday’s early morning storm which passed through Door County, the Sturgeon Bay Fire Department was paged for a problem in the channel downtown. A call came in that “Dock – A” had broken loose from the main pier at Harbor Club Marina with approximately 20 boats still attached and it was all floating into the channel. “Dock – A” is the very outside dock closest to the channel, and with the reported 50 m.p.h. wind gusts it had completely broken off from where it connects to the main dock. The person who made the first emergency call was actually in a boat connected to the loose dock. Fire Chief Tim Dietman reports that when his department arrived with 4 vehicles and 6 personnel the dock and attached boats were about 75 to 100 feet away from shore. Fire Chief Dietman tells us more…..

At that point, “Dock – B” was also in danger of becoming detached as well, but they were able to quickly tie it down and keep it on shore. Also responding to the incident were the US Coast Guard, Sturgeon Bay Police Department, and Sarter Marine Towing. Sturgeon Bay Utilities also arrived to disconnect the power with the possible danger of live wires in the water. Some people were still on their boats on Docks “B” and “C”, but they were evacuated for their own safety. Sarter Marine Towing assisted with 2 tugs to help secure the dock and attached boats. With the strong winds it was determined it would be best to simply hold the dock and boats in place as opposed to moving it all to a different location. Skipper Buds is currently moving the boats involved one-by-one to safer locations while the dock is still being held on that location. Fire Chief Dietman says this was a new type of situation, but they worked hard to keep everyone safe…..

The fire department was on scene from roughly 2:00 to 4:40 am, a little over 2 ½ hours. There were no injuries reported, and no serious boat damage. “Dock – A”, however, remains detached and will need repairs.

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