Firefighters put out fire aboard Norton Sound in San Diego Harbor after two days

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — A fire that tore through a docked commercial fishing and research vessel Friday near Seaport Village was finally put out Sunday.

The blaze erupted for unknown reasons inside the 120-foot Norton Sound about 9:30 a.m. Friday, sending thick plumes of dark-gray smoke billowing over San Diego Bay, according to the city Fire-Rescue Department.

The highest temperature reading from inside the ship was approximately 100 degrees Sunday, San Diego Fire-Rescue Department spokesperson Monica Munoz said.

"For all intents and purposes, the fire is out,” she said.

It was unclear if anyone was aboard the vessel when the blaze broke out. Firefighters initially battled the intense flames from inside, finding no victims, but were ordered to pull out for safety reasons after about a half-hour.

Firefighters initially battled the blaze from inside, but had been ordered to pull out Friday after temperatures inside the vessel rose too high for them to continue safely.

The interior of the vessel continued to burn throughout Friday and Saturday.

Firefighters monitored the fire and sprayed water on the hull from outside to cool the vessel, but could not enter until temperatures dropped to a safe level, Munoz said Saturday.

Late Friday morning, paramedics took a firefighter to a hospital for treatment of heat exhaustion, according to Munoz. He was released from medical care about 5 p.m., she said.

Firefighters stayed on scene all night to monitor the ship, rotating every three hours, according to Munoz. Crews also checked the mooring lines every hour to ensure they did not burn, she said.

Also responding to the smoky scene alongside the G Street Mole were a city firefighting helicopter, the San Diego Harbor Police and the U.S. Coast Guard.

Now that the fire appears to be out, Munoz said authorities will determine how to proceed with an investigation of the fire later Sunday.

Authorities were also having trouble locating the vessel’s owner, Munoz said.

Munoz previously said Friday that the boat’s owner was on his way from Tijuana. However, the owner in the U.S. Coast Guard’s records apparently sold the vessel, and the agency does not have the current owner in its database, Munoz said late Saturday.

"Suffice to say, the current owner has not been contacted,” she said.

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