NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — It’s been one week since several docks collapsed at the Blue Turtle Bay Marina in Old Hickory. Ice has melted and crews have been able to start removing the collapsed docks and try to get the boats out.
“We are aware that ice is a serious threat for us because of the weight on the rooftops, and when we saw the weather forecast, we knew were going to have some challenges ahead of us,” said Ric Cheyney, Chief of Operations for Sun Life Marinas, who owns the marina.
The series of collapses at Blue Turtle Bay Marina began Wednesday night. Boat owners in Dock A tell News 2 that slips were starting to submerge as ice accumulated on top of the metal roof, ultimately giving way.
A dozen people had to be rescued from the ice-cold water that night. The next morning, a portion of Dock I collapsed.
“It was a frustrating event for all of us, everyone involved. It was a significant emotional event for everybody that’s here. Everybody that’s invested so much time and effort and money into their boats. It’s fortunate no one was injured,” said Cheyney.
Part of two other docks also caved in, about 40 boats total were crushed or significantly damaged.
“When you put a lot of hard work into earning a boat, and you have a boat, and then something catastrophic like this happens, we understand the frustration that goes along with that, so we’ve got about 40 families of boaters that have been impacted by this directly,” said Cheyney.
With the ice finally melted, it’s safe enough for cleanup crews to try and pick up the pieces.
“Right now, we’ve got crews out there that are slowly disassembling and sort of untangling the damage that we currently have, and minimize any further damage to the boats,” said Cheyney.
While boat owners look to insurance for help in this time, the cleanup process may take longer with several days of rain ahead.
“Hopefully there’s no impact at all, but we don’t know what’s going to happen with the weather from one day to the next. You look at the weather a year ago, we had a tornado that no one saw coming. And unfortunately, we had another weather event that impacted another neighborhood, except our neighborhood happens to be on the water,” said Cheyney.
The marina plans to rebuild the docks but there is no timeline as of right now.