THOMASTON — The owner of a 95-foot sailing yacht that fell over while on land at a Thomaston boatyard has filed a lawsuit seeking at least $15 million in damages.

Vesper Maritime Ltd., owner of the Vesper, filed the lawsuit Thursday in U.S. District Court in Portland against Lyman Morse Boatbuilding in Thomaston.

According to the lawsuit, the British Virgin Islands-based vessel was taken to Lyman Morse on Nov. 5 after experiencing unusual performance and sounds from its steering gear.

The yacht was put on land and moved to an area at the yard that had gravel over wet, unstable soil, the lawsuit alleges. There were an insufficient number of stands and no cribbing, the suit says.

The master of the vessel spoke to boatyard staff and mentioned the likelihood of severe weather and strong winds, the suit says.

The Vesper fell over on Nov. 10, landing on its port side, causing catastrophic structural damage, the lawsuit claims.

The vessel’s owner says the boatyard removed and destroyed evidence of what caused the boat to fall over. The lawsuit alleges that Lyman Morse has refused to acknowledge its responsibility.

The lawsuit seeks not less than $15 million for monetary damages, compensatory damages, punitive damages, attorneys fees and court costs.

Lyman Morse’s attorney, Twain Braden of Portland, wouldn’t comment on the suit other than to say that the company takes its responsibilities to customers very seriously.

The Vesper was built in 2006 by Yachting Developments in New Zealand.

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