A covered pier and 10 boats burned in a smoky fire. Photo: Mechanicsville Volunteer Fire Dept./Facebook

Boats Burn after Apparent Explosion at Southern MD Marina

A fire that spread among nearly 10 boats Wednesday afternoon is under investigation at Tall Timbers Marina in St. Mary’s County, Maryland.

Witnesses told Deputy State Fire Marshals they heard an explosion come from a boat under a covered pier around 12:30 p.m., then saw fire quickly spreading to the pier and nearby boats. By the time firefighters arrived, several boats were on fire.

A spokesman for the fire marshal’s office says the fire originated on a 1940 Matthews 38-foot wooden boat. Firefighters fought the two-alarm blaze from land and from the water with marine units for nearly two hours.

The boat fire drew a huge response, with least nine fire companies responding along with the U.S. Navy, the fire marshal’s office and Maryland State Police.

Very little is left of the covered pier that housed 10 boats at Tall Timbers Marina in St. Mary’s County. Photo: Seventh District Volunteer Fire Department

Maryland’s departments of the Environment and Natural Resources and the Coast Guard helped contain the oil runoff and fuel spills from the burning boats.

In the end, approximately 10 boats were damaged to the tune of nearly $400,000. Two people reported injuries and refused EMS treatment but later took themselves to the hospital with minor injuries, the fire marshal’s office reports.

Tall Timbers Marina posted a statement on their Facebook page Wednesday afternoon that read,

As many have seen and heard, the marina experienced an unfortunate event today. While we lost a few boats and a pier, everyone is safe. We would like to thank the many organizations that helped put out the fire and prevent further loss of property.

Talls Timbers Marina and the Reluctant Navigator Restaurant would like to extend a 10% discount to our first responders this Friday (June 9th).

The marina went on to thank agencies including the Second District Fire and Rescue Squad, St. Mary’s County Paramedics and EMS, and the Hollywood, Seventh District, Bay District, NAS Pax River, Ridge, Leonardtown, Company 9 and Solomons Island fire departments along with police and government agencies.

As the investigation continues, anyone with information is asked to call the Maryland State Fire Marshal’s Office- Southern Regional Office at 443-550-6820.

-Meg Walburn Viviano