Local Crews Salvage Boats Sunken by Hurricane Sandy

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CLEVELAND -- Clean up and damage assessment continues 10 days since Superstorm Sandy ripped through Northeast Ohio. The marinas along Lake Erie took a beating and so did dozens of boats. 

It's believed 30 boats sunk at Cleveland's Edgewater Marina.  

"It was unlike anything I ever witnessed," said Michael Hill, Edgewater Marina Director of Operations. "You can see out here we have breaches in the break wall. The break wall itself was almost like a launching ramp for the waves. We had eight to nine feet waves in the marina itself," he added

Underwater Marine Contractors, along with Cleveland Marine Towing, have been working non-stop since Friday to pull up sunken boats and to see what can be saved.  

"It ranges from a little bit of hull damage to completely destroyed. We've had some that have come out and gone right to dumpsters and some that are sitting on the parking lot to be appraised for damage," Don Codeluppi of Cleveland Marine Towing said. 

Jim Knize of Brooklyn Heights watched as workers maneuvered to bring up his sailboat that was completely underwater. He had recently bought the boat and had never taken it out. 

"As you can see, it's totaled.  It was sickening to see the interior, the whole outside totaled.  It was terrible," Knize said after the boat was raised from the water. 

Underwater Marine Contractors brought up 15 boats and none of them were salvageable. 

"Once the boat goes down, there's a lot of damage that the water does. The boat may look fine but to fix that is going to be so expensive that it is just not worth it," Bart Schasfoort, owner of Underwater Marine Contractors said. 

The priority is to clear the marina of wrecked and sunken boats, so state and insurance adjustors can assess the damage done and repairs can start to be made.

*Click here for more on Hurricane Sandy

*Click here for Lake Erie Hurricane Sandy cleanup details

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