Elliott Bay Design Group (EBDG), a naval architecture and marine engineering firm with offices in Seattle, New Orleans and Ketchikan, today announced that the passenger vessel Hornblower Guardian, built to its design, is now in service.
EBDG partnered with Hornblower Cruises and Events of San Francisco to engineer the multipurpose vessel for that company's Niagara Falls operation. The new 68-foot long monohull vessel carries up to 150 passengers and has a unique, dual purpose as both an open excursion vessel and an initial responder should one of the larger boats in the fleet experience difficulties.
Designed with sufficient horsepower and push knees , the Guardian is equipped to push a 700-passenger vessel upstream against a current and features a shallow draft, robust aluminum construction and water jet propulsion. A notch in the starboard side of the vessel facilitates the crew's access to the water for emergency operations. Other features of the Guardian include large life rafts that can handle additional people in the unlikely event of major damage to any of the larger vessels.
The Guardian has been designed to meet Transport Canada requirements and will operate primarily as an open excursion vessel on both the American and Canadian sides of the Niagara River offering passengers breathtaking views of Niagara Falls.