The 31.09m Citadel Yachts-built Polar Bear has been seriously damaged following an extensive fire that engulfed the vessel while undergoing work at Marine Group Boat Works in San Diego.

According to multiple reports in the Californian media the vessel, launched in June 2011, sustained heavy damage with a high potential that it would be confirmed a total loss. The cause of the fire is, as yet, unconfirmed but eyewitnesses have suggested that a welder was working on the yacht at the time of the fire. No other vessels were caught up in the fire, although the yard itself had to be evacuated.

Speaking to NBC San Diego, Polar Bear’s owner, Larry Jodsass said, “Am I angry? No. Anger is not the right word. It was my toy, my wonderful, beautiful piece of equipment. I think it’s the most beautiful boat that ever has been built.”

“I don’t have enough data to make any positive or negative comment as to why somebody who’s doing their job obviously didn’t get it done because it would not have caught on fire”, he added. was unable to reach Marine Group Boat Works for comment on the incident.