Yep -- everybody checked things on their own boats very carefully the next few days.
The early assessment was that a 5 gallon gasoline can had been strapped to the mast
, on the deck
, for his trip from the Bahamas
a day earlier. The fire people thought it had developed a leak, and dripped into the bilge
. The 90 degree heat caused the drips to evaporate into gasoline vapors, which, being heavier than air, settled into the bilge
and filled the entire boat below the windows.
When the owner started the generator
to make coffee in the morning, the fumes ignited. The owner was leaning overboard
looking for water
in the generator exhaust
when he started the generator, and was blown overboard
. Had he been anywhere else, he wouldn't have survived.
Also, had the wind
been any different, the mooring
line would have burned through, and Ms Fitz
would have drifted into the many other boats downwind and downcurrent, likely igniting them as well.