Yacht sinks following on board explosion

A yacht sunk off the Coromandel coastline following multiple explosions on-board early Wednesday morning. File Photo.

A man suffered minor burns to his face after his nine-metre fibreglasss yacht caught fire off the Coromandel coast.

The yacht was moored at sea at Te Kouma, near Coromandel town, when it was engulfed in flames after multiple explosions on board at 3am on Wednesday.

The man on board the yacht managed to jump into a dingy and row to a nearby wharf before the explosions occurred.

Speaking to Fairfax deputy chief fire officer Mike Olliff says an LPG gas cylinder caused a fireball and then the petrol tank exploded.

'He was very lucky that he woke up. The boat was full of smoke. One of his squabs was on fire. He grabbed his phone and jumped in the dingy. When we got there the boat was well a blaze.”

Fire crews had to travel through private land and locked gates to get to the isolated harbour.

Mike says there was no risk to the other 14 boats moored the harbour at the time as there was no wind and the boat was moored with a steel anchor rope.

The boat is believed to have sunk.



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