Emergency crews responded to a report of a boat submerged in the Erie Canal at Ilion Marina on Thursday.
Ilion Deputy Fire Chief David Paddock said during a telephone interview that the department received a call around 7:30 a.m. about a boat that had fallen below the water line. He said the 28-foot cabin cruiser had reached the bottom of the marina when crews arrived.
Paddock said crews had to secure a web strapping underneath the boat to lift it up. Once it was brought above the water line, the water inside the boat was pumped out. The boat was then hoisted out for towing. Raymond Johnson, a local diver, assisted at the scene by using scuba gear and diving into the water to help with the web strapping.
Dockmaster Don Sterling said he contacted the fire department when he noticed the boat was about three-quarters underwater when he arrived at the marina Thursday morning. Both he and the boat owner’s wife had recently noticed that the boat seemed to be listing.
Sterling said the boat has been at the marina since July. He said Thursday morning he didn’t know what had caused the boat to submerge.
Sterling said four boats were docked at the marina Thursday morning. He said typically there are more this time of year, but numbers are down with the closure of the lock in Canajoharie.
Sterling said both he and the Ilion Village Police regularly check on the boats at the marina.
Paddock said crews were cleared from the scene by noon.
“It’s the first time we’ve had one in a bit, at the marina,” he said.
Also responding were the Ilion Police Department, Frankfort Fire Department, Herkimer County Emergency Services, the state Department of Environmental Conservation, the state Canal Corporation and Chuck’s Towing, of Richfield Springs. A Herkimer County and Ilion Fire Department Technical Rescue trailer was also on the scene.