Lobster fisherman credited with saving 3 people, 2 dogs from burning yacht


An investigation is underway into what caused a 70-foot yacht to burn and sink in New Hampshire on Saturday.Tom Hadley, of Hollis, said he was in the right place at the right time when his instincts told him to turn his little boat around and see if the yacht showing a bit of smoke needed any help.Watch the full story in the video player above. Hadley has been driving from Hollis to his 18-foot boat on the coast for 17 years. The part-time lobster fisherman now has a tale to tell after what started as checking out smoke from the yacht at the mouth of Little Harbor on Saturday, quickly turned into a harrowing rescue.”By the time I reached the vessel it just burst into flames and was fully engulfed,” Hadley said. “Three people and two dogs were standing on a platform in the stern.” Hadley said they were holding pool noodles for floatation. He yelled to them to jump in the water, then dumped his lobster traps to make room.” At first I hauled a lady on board and then we put the two dogs on board,” Hadley said. “And then a younger man was half in, I hauled him over the side.”He called over a small fishing boat to help the third man clinging to the side as the heat coming from the boat intensified. “If there was an explosion the thought of being showered with burning fiberglass was not too appealing,” Hadley said. Video above: Crews work to retrieve gas tanks from burned yachtThe three people who lived aboard the “Elusive,” including a couple from Connecticut and their first mate, were taken to the dock at the Wentworth Marina, then to the hospital, where they were treated and released and reunited with their dogs. good Samaritans were in the area and were able to make those grabs,” New Castle fire Chief Theodore Hartmann said. “The water temperatures being what they are this time of year, the tenability of being in that water for any period of time is minimal.” The tide pushed the burning yacht off the coast, where it sank in deep water. The boat will not be recovered.

An investigation is underway into what caused a 70-foot yacht to burn and sink in New Hampshire on Saturday.

Tom Hadley, of Hollis, said he was in the right place at the right time when his instincts told him to turn his little boat around and see if the yacht showing a bit of smoke needed any help.

Watch the full story in the video player above.

Hadley has been driving from Hollis to his 18-foot boat on the coast for 17 years. The part-time lobster fisherman now has a tale to tell after what started as checking out smoke from the yacht at the mouth of Little Harbor on Saturday, quickly turned into a harrowing rescue.

“By the time I reached the vessel it just burst into flames and was fully engulfed,” Hadley said. “Three people and two dogs were standing on a platform in the stern.”

Hadley said they were holding pool noodles for floatation. He yelled to them to jump in the water, then dumped his lobster traps to make room.

“At first I hauled a lady on board and then we put the two dogs on board,” Hadley said. “And then a younger man was half in, I hauled him over the side.”

He called over a small fishing boat to help the third man clinging to the side as the heat coming from the boat intensified.

“If there was an explosion the thought of being showered with burning fiberglass was not too appealing,” Hadley said.

Video above: Crews work to retrieve gas tanks from burned yacht

The three people who lived aboard the “Elusive,” including a couple from Connecticut and their first mate, were taken to the dock at the Wentworth Marina, then to the hospital, where they were treated and released and reunited with their dogs.

“We were very fortunate that those good Samaritans were in the area and were able to make those grabs,” New Castle fire Chief Theodore Hartmann said. “The water temperatures being what they are this time of year, the tenability of being in that water for any period of time is minimal.”

The tide pushed the burning yacht off the coast, where it sank in deep water. The boat will not be recovered.

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