New Rochelle boat found shipwrecked in Florida

Posted: Updated:
NEW ROCHELLE -

A boat that used to call New Rochelle home has been found shipwrecked on a Florida beach, with the owner nowhere to be found.

The 45-year-old boat is believed to have washed ashore in Melbourne, Florida, after Hurricane Irma pounded the state.

The owner of the vessel is Janusz Machnica, who once owned the New York Sailing School in New Rochelle before it went bankrupt five years ago.

Chris Nihill, who bought the business and renamed it the Port Sailing School, says Machnica moved to Florida and used the boat to run a sailing lesson charter business out of Marathon, Florida. 

"I heard some scuttlebutt that it needed a new engine. Things were worn out on the boat and the former owner of it from New York Sailing School didn't have money to put into the boat. Things were falling apart so he probably just abandoned the boat," says Nihill.

Machnica's location is unknown, but unconfirmed reports say that he might be in jail.

Florida police say the boat was most recently registered in Key West.

Officials in Florida say that if no one claims the boat, it will be removed and likely salvaged.

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