Houseboat Sinks To Bottom Of Icy Norwalk River, Spills Fuel

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A houseboat is sunken in the ice of the Norwalk River at the Oyster Bend Marina on Saturday. Photo Credit: Rick Reardon
Cleanup crews respond to the scene of a fuel spill at a marina on Platt Street. Photo Credit: Rick Reardon
This is the scene near the sunken houseboat in East Norwalk. Photo Credit: Rick Reardon
The Norwalk River is mostly iced over near the Oyster Bend Marina where the houseboat sank. Photo Credit: Rick Reardon
A boom is placed around the sunken houseboat to contain the fuel spill in the Norwalk River. Photo Credit: Rick Reardon

NORWALK, Conn. -- A 46-foot Chris Craft houseboat sank to the bottom of the Norwalk River late Friday, leaking gasoline or fuel oil into the water, the Norwalk Fire Department reported.

The Fire Department responded at about 7 p.m. to a report of a strong chemical odor along the Norwalk River, Deputy Fire Chief Edward Prescott said. 

An investigation by the Engine Company led to the Oyster Bend Marina at 23 Platt St. in East Norwalk, Prescott said. Firefighters found the houseboat resting on the bottom of the river, surrounded by a red substance thought to be gasoline or a fuel oil, he said.

The spill 30- to 50-gallon spill was confined within the area of the boat due to the icy conditions in the Norwalk River, Prescott said.

The property owner and vessel owner were ordered to contract with an environmental contractor to clean the spill and place booms around the houseboat until it could be salvaged, Prescott said. Cleanup crews were on the scene Saturday afternoon.

Inspectors from the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and the Coast Guard along with the Norwalk Marine Police responded to the scene of the sunken houseboat.

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