Reports now indicate that a faulty heater aboard a boat docked at Pier 59 caused Friday morning’s blaze. The fire was fought for at least an hour by some 60 firefighters. The extent of damage is currently unknown (at least to me).
The blaze’s only fatality was, sadly, a German Shepherd that had been rescued from the frigid Hudson River just last month.
The current Pier 59, incidentally, bears scant resemblance (even before the fire) to the facility that would have received Titanic back in 1912. In the early 1990s, the pier was extensively remodeled and incorporated into a sports and entertainment complex that also included several nearby piers.
I can remember sailing by Pier 59 several times in the 1960s, 70s and 80s, before the remodeling. Back then, the slowly disintegrating structure seemed to be mimicking the fate of Titanic, lost below the sea hundreds of miles away. Perhaps, in a way, Pier 59 is still mimicking Titanic, since the tragic liner is now an integral part of any ever growing number of entertainment businesses.
Anyway, here’s a link to a short video of the blaze (you’ll have to suffer through a brief commercial/advert first).