Rum Dog salvaged, placed on mooring in O.B Harbor

Tow BoatUS personnel rigging the Rum Dog for lift bags on Wednesday evening.

The sailboat Rum Dog, which grounded by Little Bridge in Oak Bluffs and then partially sank, blocking the inlet, has been pumped out, refloated, and moored in Oak Bluffs Harbor. Oak Bluffs harbormaster Todd Alexander said he plans to confer with the ostensible owner, Brian O’Gorman, about salvage costs. Alexander said O’Gorman isn’t the registered owner of the vessel, but there may be a bill of sale that proves otherwise. He also said the vessel was in the wrong place and improperly tended when foul weather struck.

“Clearly they had no idea a storm was coming,” Alexander said. When a vessel anchors at night, he added, captain and crew must inform themselves of weather for the coming days. 

Tow Boat US Falmouth owner Mark Brown told The Times his company got the Rum Dog to Oak Bluffs Harbor buoyed by lift bags at about 6:30 pm Wednesday. The salvage was executed on behalf of the town of Oak Bluffs, he said. On Sunday, aboard his response boat, he said he made “four or five attempts” to secure the Rum Dog for a tow in choppy conditions. “I tried to grab it before the anchor broke,” he said.

However, Brown said, a big wave came, broke the anchor, and cast the sailboat toward the bridge, where his boat could not go.

O’Gorman’s friend John Chivers said the reason O’Gorman previously referred to him as “Hercules” is because he singlehandedly shoved the boat away from rocks.

Chivers said he “settled the keel into the sand so it wasn’t banging against the rocks anymore.”