The owner of a runaway houseboat that traveled more than 165 miles from its moorings in Boonesboro to the mouth of the Ohio River has hired a salvage company to retrieve the boat, emergency management officials said Sunday.
The houseboat was ripped from its pier in Madison County, probably Friday night, and traveled down the Kentucky River to the Ohio River on Saturday and Sunday, said Tommy Russell, director of Frankfort and Franklin County Emergency Management.
Russell was alerted to the problem Friday and again on Saturday by state emergency management officials. He and Franklin County officials were concerned that the boat would hit one of Franklin County’s nine bridges. some of which have very low clearances.
High river levels coupled with debris in the river from last week’s winter storm kept the boat toward the center or middle of the river, making it easier for it to clear low-lying bridges and keeping it away from bridge pilings.
“I got a message earlier this morning that it entered the Ohio around 11:55 a.m.,” Russell said Sunday. He said he had been told that the boat’s owner had hired a salvage company specializes in retrieving boats.
It’s miraculous that the errant houseboat did not damage any piers, bridges or pilings in Franklin County during its journey, Russell said.
High water has closed three roads in low-lying areas of Franklin County, but Russell said wide-spread flooding from melting snow has largely been avoided.
By Beth Musgrave