New Fireboats Headed to Houston

MarineLink.com
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Photo: Port of Houston

A two-week voyage through four Great Lakes and the Mississippi River will bring to the Port of Houston Authority the first of three high-performance fireboats to replace the current fleet.

"As the nation's busiest port in terms of foreign tonnage and home to one of the world's largest petrochemical complexes, our firefighting team is second to none in protecting this national asset and the many who work here," said Port Authority Executive Director Len Waterworth. "These new fireboats will strengthen these firefighters' ability to save lives and property along the 25-mile long Port of Houston."

The five-member crew includes three from the Port of Houston Authority's Fire Department. The crew will bring the new craft across Lake Ontario and Lake Erie to Detroit, Mich. (May 22) and then across Lake Huron and Lake Michigan to Chicago, Ill. (May 25). From Chicago, the journey continues on the Cumberland River with a stop at Lockport, Ill. (May 26). Following the Illinois River, the fireboat sails on to St. Louis, Mo. (May 27) and the Mississippi River with four stops on the way to New Orleans, La. (May 31): Cape Girardeau, Mo. (May 28), Memphis, Tenn. (May 29), Greenville, Miss (May 30), and Baton Rouge, La. (May 31). A final stop will be made at Galveston, Texas (June 1) before arriving at the Port of Houston on about June 1, 2013.

To travel along with the new fireboat as it makes its way to Houston, follow posts by the Port Authority on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PortofHouston or on Twitter @Portof_Houston.

The voyage is being made by Port Authority Senior Captain Glenn Hood, a 14-year veteran of the fire department, and Engine Operators Robert Lacour and Vic Vasquez, each with 10 years at the Port Authority. These professionals are members of highly trained firefighters and Hazardous Materials Response Teams. The firefighters are certified by the state of Texas as structural, marine, HazMat, and Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). All pilots and captains are licensed U.S. Coast Guard mariners.

The Port of Houston Fire Department currently operates four fire stations strategically stationed along the Houston Ship Channel. The personnel and equipment fight marine and land fires and respond to other emergencies in the upper ship channel.

The ship will be piloted by Captain Ron Peddle, an owner of MetalCraft Marine with 32 years of experience piloting ships and 34 years of building boats.

The new Firestorm 70 is a state-of-the-art command center and high speed response vessel. Built by MetalCraft Marine, each fireboat has powerful quad diesel inboard engines to propel the vessel at a swift 45 knots top speed. The current fleet clocks in at 14 and 16 knots. Such an improvement in speed is important when providing fire protection for the 25-mile long Port of Houston. The new fireboats are very maneuverable, can make quick stops and change direction within three boat lengths.

Part firehouse, part fireboat, the vessel enables the crew to stay on station for extended periods. The cabin includes a primary care berth with four secondary berths in the cuddy. Portable berths can be positioned in the aft equipment cabin to handle the injured at an incident.

Four firefighting pumps can produce flow meter results of 13,600 gallons per minute (GPM) at 150 pounds per square inch (PSI) and 17,000 GPM at 130 PSI and stream up to 450 feet with a roof mounted Stang monitor. This is three times the discharge rate of any of the current Port Authority fireboats. As a shore hydrant, the Firestorm 70 can pump an impressive 7,000 GPM at 70 PSI through 1,000 feet of hose from a 5" Storz outlet before staging pumps are required.

Each fireboat is 70'10" long with a breadth of 22'10" and a draft of 34 inches. Funds for these vessels come mostly from federal grants to replace the three aging fireboats commissioned in 1973 and 1983.

"Under the guidance of Project Manager Jay Milner and Design Manager Ryan Hunter, our team of craftsmen put in over 20,000 hours to build this industry leading fast response Firestorm 70,” said Michael Allen, General Manager of MetalCraft Marine.

MetalCraft Marine is a fully integrated designer and manufacturer of custom high performance fire, rescue, patrol, research, and other specialized work boats. The business was established in 1987 and MetalCraft Marine is now a leader in the design and manufacturing of aluminum water-jet propelled craft with over 550 hulls built to date.

The firm's customers include the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy and Panama Canal Authority.

www.portofhouston.com

 

  • Photo: Port of Houston

    Photo: Port of Houston

  • Photo: Port of Houston

    Photo: Port of Houston

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter June 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Workboats

Alabama Pilots Order High-speed Launch from Gladding-Hearn

The Alabama Pilot, Inc., in Mobile, Ala., has ordered a Chesapeake Class pilot boat from Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding, Duclos Corporation. Delivery of the new 53-footer is scheduled for mid-2017.

SeaPro FourStroke Making Gains in the Commercial Market

Mercury Marine’s family of SeaPro FourStroke outboard engines is suited for high-hour applications and harsh environments, according to the manufacturer, who said

Ulstein Delivers for BS Offshore

The first of two service operation vessels (SOV) ordered in 2015 by Bernhard Schulte Offshore (BS Offshore) and its client Siemens from Ulstein Verft in is now completed,

Maritime Safety

Ailing Mariner Medevaced off Alaska

An ailing crewmember aboard the fishing vessel Seafreeze Alaska was medevaced approximately 195 miles north of Cold Bay, Alaska, Thursday.   A Coast Guard Air

More than 2,000 Migrants Rescued at Sea -Italy Coastguard

Ship crews pulled more than 2,000 migrants from overcrowded boats in the Mediterranean on Friday, Italy's coastguard said, as people smugglers stepped up operations

Seven Indonesian Sailors Kidnapped in Philippines

Seven Indonesian sailors have been taken hostage in the Sulu Sea in the southern Philippines, Indonesia's foreign minister said on Friday, the latest in a string

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Naval Architecture Offshore Oil Pipelines Salvage Ship Electronics Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0909 sec (11 req/sec)