Very low tide at 8 this morning.
Sewing room with a view!

Fire on Board

I have been a bad blogger. Absent. Quiet. (Well, I'm rarely quiet, but I've been quiet here.) We've been electrically challenged on the boat and that did not allow me to get into a rhythm with this new lifestyle. I've been working, sewing, writing (just not here) working on the boat and living my life with EW. 

Let's catch up, shall we?

I guess the first bit of news you missed is -- We had a fire on the boat! I wasn't there, but I am absolutely certain that EW had some very exciting moments.

We've had electrical/battery issues since we started living on the mooring. We probably had them before but didn't know as we were using shore power all winter and while working on the boat in Harpswell. We installed new batteries (which we needed) but it didn't fix the problem. EW began to do some diagnostic/detective/electrical work. He's not fond of doing electrical work, but he kept at it. He realized when we replaced the batteries that there were some issues with the cables.

Two weeks ago while I was away overnight for my book club he switched cables at the batteries in the back, headed up to start the engine and--thank all the gods-- went back to the master stateroom for a tool. He entered the room just as the battery switch burst into flames. 

Oh my god, oh my god. 

Later he told me that his first thought was that he was on a mooring and the fire was between him and the propane tanks and that the exit to the dinghy was aft of the tanks. He wondered if he should leave immediately. Instead (and that thought process took longer to write than EW did to think it) he reached past the fire, unhooked the cables, and then grabbed a fire extinguisher and put the fire out.  Burned Battery Switch

At some point in the evening, he emailed this photo with the text "Boat fire" and waited for me to see the message and call him. I didn't see the message (he should thank his lucky stars for that) so he called me around 10.    

He later sent this photo.  All that white stuff -- that's from the fire extinguisher. More on that later.

Fire Dammage

                                                                                                                      I was aghast! (I have always wanted to use that appropriately - "struck with horror" - yup that about describes it.)  I offered to go home but we agreed I'd stick with the plan. He kept saying it was his fault and I simply assumed he was wrong about that. I thought that the bad wiring had finally bit us and was delighted and thrilled he was there to take care of it. When I did get home late the next afternoon, EW drew a diagram of what existed and what he had done. Yep. He caused the fire. Poor EW.

I was simply thankful that he was OK and after that thankful that he had saved La Luna. I was also very thankful that he had just this spring taken all of our fire extinguishers in for inspection and service. We have at least one in every compartment. I am on board with the right man.

On that fateful Thursday night when I had just learned about the fire, I had a hard time sleeping. In addition to worrying about what could have been (how foolish is that?) I also began to plot and plan about how to live on the mooring without any power at all. I'm not that low maintenance. There I was, lying awake in a beautiful bedroom trying to wrap my brain around the what the situation would be on the boat. My thoughts went something like this:

  • Wow. I'll have to heat the hot water.
  • Oh. The propane stove won't work because the safety switch runs on the battery.
  • No matter. The water pump won't work either.
  • We can carry water.
  • We have a portable propane stove.
  • We will have no lights.
  • I don't think this will work.

In the meantime, EW had gotten up early in the morning and taken the dinghy in to shore. He told S. at the boatyard what had happened, then he went to the gym. (He needed that.)

An hour later he pulled back into the boatyard just as the crew was bringing La Luna in to the dock. They had opened up space for us so we could get powered up again. We were very thankful about that as well.

I remained thankful, even as I spent Saturday cleaning up fire extinguisher powder. Wow. That's amazing stuff. I also had to wash four loads of laundry as our four underwear drawers were in that compartment and were covered with the powder. The next post will be about that. For now - be assured that things are actually as back to normal as they get for us. EW successfully fixed the electrical issues, we are back on the mooring, and life is good. I just have to start blogging. 


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fire alarms

This reminds me of a time when we had a fire on our boat, it scared the life out of me. It was also started by some dodgy wiring, luckily we were present when it happened and took action with the fire extinguishers we had. After that we had a complete check for our electrical wiring and we do it every year now.

Barbara Hart

Fires on board are scary stuff. EW took care of the fire much quicker than it took me to clean up the mess. Ah well.. Thanks for reading and commenting.


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