MIAMI (WSVN) – A South Florida boat captain says some drawbridges along the Miami River closed early, causing his vessel to be left out in Biscayne Bay as Hurricane Isaias approaches.
Albert Arencibia said the bridge at Southwest Second Avenue closed too early, and his boat is so big, it cannot go underneath the bridge, so now, he’s stuck and stranded.
“This is not ideal for us to be out here,” he said. “Second Avenue bridge was closed, and Northwest Fifth Street bridge was closed, as well.”
Arencibia captains an 88-foot, $2 million luxury yacht. He was heading up the Miami River to store it ahead of Hurricane Isaias, but due to its size, the vessel was blocked by bridges.
“Some bridges were open, and some were not open,” he said. “Brickell bridge was able to open. We were able to get under it. South Miami Avenue bridge was open, as well, but they advised me, ‘Hey, Second Avenue bridge is not going to open.’ I’m like, ‘Why? Is it broken?’ They’re like, ‘No, they’re locked down.’ I was like, ‘Excuse me?’”
The captain said the bridge stopped operating at 1 p.m. Friday due to the incoming storm. However, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, the bridge was supposed to shut down at 10 p.m.
As a result, Arencibia’s vessel is now stuck and stranded.
“The biggest fear is the insurance,” he said. “If, God forbid, something happens where a window blows out and whatnot, the insurance says that we didn’t do our due diligence to take the boat to a safe harbor, and now, we’re kind of out here in the bay.”
Hurricane Isaias has forced Miami-Dade County officials to close all marinas.
7News cameras captured boaters at Haulover and Dinner Key marinas securing their vessels.
“We’ll double tie the boat, and we’ll have it set for a 50 to 60 mph wind, and hopefully, it doesn’t get more than that,” Stan Saffan said.
As for Arencibia, he’s just hoping the storm weakens as it churns this way.
“Unfortunately, now I’m hoping that I’m in the right spot, and there’s minimal damage to the boat or none at all, because if there is some, the insurance is going to have a lot of questions,” he said.
Arencibia continues to pilot the vessel in Biscayne Bay, and USCG said all drawbridges are closed and unable to open.
The Coast Guard recommends all boaters to seek shelter.
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