Abigail Grace will fish again, says Robin Quinlan
Fishing vessel damaged by fire in Harbour Grace
The vice-president of Quinlan Brothers says the Abigail Grace will be ready for fishing in the spring, despite a fire in Harbour Grace Wednesday morning.
Robin Quinlan said the engine room was not damaged and the hull is intact on the 25-metre, 220-tonne vessel.
"You can do a lot of work with fibreglass. We'll be fishing by the spring," Quinlan told CBC News Wednesday.
Quinlan said the efforts of the Harbour Grace Volunteer Fire Department helped contain the damage to the "shelter deck," which includes the wheelhouse.
He said the seven to eight people who crew the vessel will not be out of work.
Firefighters in Harbour Grace were called to the Harbour Grace Ocean Enterprises wharf around 5 a.m.
Fire chief Jim Barnes said the Abigail Grace was engulfed in flames upon their arrival.
"En route to the scene, we could see visible flames coming from the area, so we knew we had a working fire going," said Barnes.
He said most of the damage was to the upper deck and wheelhouse areas.
Industry sources say the replacement value for a vessel of this size is around $2-million.
Fire crews managed to put out the fire by battling flames from both outside and inside the vessel.
Barnes said temperatures were cold at the time, but winds weren't high.
Barnes told CBC's St. John's Morning Show there were no injuries, no one was on board at the time, and the boat remains docked at the wharf.
The fire doesn't seem suspicious in nature, but the investigation has been turned over to the RCMP.
This is the second serious fire at the facility.
Two years ago, the Atlantic Navigator was seriously damaged by fire. That vessel was also owned by Quinlan Brothers.
Paul Lannon, general manager with Harbour Grace Ocean Enterprises, said the quick work of the volunteer firefighters averted a much bigger disaster.
They were able to save the boat and keep it from sinking but also avoided damaging the wharf.
"Although it's a concrete wharf it's got a wooden frame and the wharf is a mainstay of our operation here because it's where we pick our vessels out of the water."
There are currently 30 vessels at the facility, which specialize in repair and maintenance services.
Lannon said they will do everything in their power to get the fishing vessel up and running as soon as possible for the owners.
"The owner is very anxious to get this boat back into the fleet and back fishing for the spring. Once the inspection is complete we'll see how much time it will take."