What To Do When Your Multi-Million Dollar Yacht Catches Fire

“Would the owner of the superyacht Positive Energy please swallow the naming irony and tow your boat out of the marina; it’s on fire.”


Let’s say you’ve made a few dollars in your day and find yourself with a lovely multi-million dollar yacht parked outside your favorite port-side restaurant. What do you do when the ol’ Iamona catches fire?

Well, according to an article from Bloomberg titled “Why Are All These Superyachts Catching Fire?”, the standard practice is to tow your blazing boat out of the marina and let it die a slow and painful death—and make sure you have insurance.

Here’s an example from Yacht Marine Brokerage YouTube channel featured in the article:

This boat fire problem is apparently fairly common, with smaller and older boats more prone to fires. If you don’t act quick and pull the floating campfire out of the marina, the other boats downwind will also burn.

This alarming string of yacht fires isn’t the act of a Robin Hood arsonist or any foul play. The main cause of boat fires, as with anything else like houses or cars, is an electrical fire. From Bloomberg:

It’s the older and smaller boats that are typically more at risk, says Joe F. Foggia, a yacht sales broker at Northrop & Johnson in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. “As wires get older and they chafe on the metal structure, any of that kind of stuff can create a fire.” Much as in land-bound houses, electrical fires are most commonly to blame on yachts, from faulty connections to docks, wiring damage from salt water, and amateur captains trying to make repairs while out at sea. Issues in the fuel system and galley fires are also concerns.


So there you go. What to do when your super expensive superyacht blows up:

  • save the others
  • have insurance
  • keep up with maintenance next time

Of course one assumes that the more expensive the superyacht, the better the build quality and the lower risk of fire. Still, people spend hundreds of thousands of dollars in insurance on these million dollar yachts covering everything from rogue waves to animal attacks, so having fire coverage seems like a reasonable investment.


Reviews Editor, Jalopnik


farscythe - makin da cawfee!

aah rich people.. spending so much money just to stay afloat... then having it all burn down around them anyway... i just have a large shoe