The U.S. Coast Guard responded after receiving a report shortly after 5:30 p.m. that a vessel was on fire at Popes Islands Fleet Marina. The New Bedford and Fairhaven fire departments also rushed to the scene.
Flames could be seen shooting off the luxury yacht, sending thick, black smoke billowing into the sky. Later, once emergency crews got the blaze under control, the multi-million dollar boat's charred remains were visible.
Luis Frias, who works nearby, said there was tons of black smoke in the area.
"It was just smoke, black smoke, that was it," he said. "It's a huge boat. It's a multi-million dollar boat and I think it's not even a year old."
The yacht had 500 gallons of fuel on board, which presented an added challenge for firefighters.
"Pretty much 100-percent of the boat was involved in the fire and the water they were putting on it was doing nothing," said Alan Wolfe, who owns a boat nearby. "It felt like a movie. I just feel sorry for the owners because I know them and it's a very expensive boat."
In the aftermath of the fire, it appeared as if it had snowed on the water due to the massive amount of foam.
New Bedford Fire Chief Scott Krueger said they used all of their foam and were forced to call in two more foam trucks from the New Bedford airport.
A floating boom was used in the water to prevent pollution. The Coast Guard and environmental police on scene said no major pollution had been reported.
The boat is reportedly named Miss Dunia, according to our affiliate WJAR. The fire started below its deck, the chief said. It wasn't immediately clear who, if anyone, was on the boat before flames broke out.
“I’m not exactly clear what was going on at the time of the fire," Krueger said. "There might have been people coming and going, I’m not sure. We’re investigating all that.”
No injuries were reported, the Coast Guard and New Bedford fire chief said.
The cause of the fire is not known at this time. An investigation is ongoing.