Towboats Rescue Runaway Restaurant

Thursday, March 17, 2011
Jeff Ruby’s Waterfront restaurant and barge being pushed back upriver by C&B Marine towboats. Photo courtesy C&B Marine.

By Raina Clark

On Friday, March 11, Jeff Ruby’s Waterfront restaurant, situated on a barge on the Ohio River, broke loose from its moorings and began floating down river, with diners trapped onboard, toward the Clay Wade Bailey Bridge. According to local media the barge floated 85 feet downriver and was saved from hitting the bridge by a mooring cable that was still attached.

The restaurant is two miles from where McGinnis Inc. keeps its Cincinnati fleet, but some of the company’s towboats were already working in a dock just upriver from the restaurant. Doug Hedrick, Manager of Marine Operations, Cincinnati Division, at McGinnis, said that just a few minutes later, “about 10:15 p.m., we got a call that the Waterfront restaurant had broke away … We were there within 10 minutes.”

The MV Susan E McGinnis arrived on the scene first. “We came up underneath of it, [downriver] and took some pressure off of it,” Hedrick said, referring to the remaining mooring line that was holding the restaurant back from the bridge. Then the boat pushed the restaurant barge toward shore. A second tug, the MV Vivian McGinnis, was stationed “right outside the restaurant,” Hedrick said, “10 feet away, on the outside making sure the restaurant didn’t go any further than it already had.”

According to local reports, all 84 people in the restaurant were offloaded by the Covington Fire Department after 11:00 p.m. on Friday. According to the Coast Guard, first responders secured a ladder to the restaurant's gangway to allow the passengers to evacuate one at a time. All passengers were evacuated safely with no injuries.

Towboats from C&B Marine also arrived on the scene and remained with the restaurant barge after the McGinnis boats departed at about 2:30 a.m. Rob Carlisle, President of C&B Marine, said that their MV Steve Kuhr helped keep the restaurant barge in place through the night. At about 8:00 a.m. the next day, Saturday, the MV Wayne C was also on scene to assist.

“We brought a crane in on Saturday and prepared to release the ramp still attached to the barge,” Carlisle said. “On Sunday we used the James H, the Steve Kuhr, the Wayne C and the Beverly Wayne to move the restaurant to Covington Landing,” a new docking site, upriver about three quarters of a mile from the restaurant’s original location.

The C&B Marine boats moved the barge upriver at a rate of a half-mile to a mile per hour, for four hours, Carlisle said. “The waters were quite violent,” he said. “The river level was at 56 feet, four feet above flood stage.” The two story restaurant sits on a 230-ft by 50-ft barge, Carlisle said, and he compared the job to pushing the bulk of a city block upriver. Once at the Covington Landing, Carlisle said, “we were assisted by Aquarius Marine [a rigging company]” whose sectional barges were used to tie up the Waterfront restaurant barge. C&B Marine’s operations were finished Sunday at 4:30 pm.

C&B Marine, a Covington, Ky.-based company, is a product of a recent merger of Greater Cincinnati Marine and Bray Marine. The Coast Guard is investigating the reason the Waterfront restaurant broke away from its moorings.

Maritime Reporter September 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds


MAN 32/44CR Engine for Trawler Newbuild

Voyager Fishing Company, Ltd., based in Kilkeel, Northern Ireland, has ordered a new trawler/purse seiner, designed by Salt Ship Design in Norway and to be built at Karstensens Skipsværft in Skagen,

Royal Thai Navy Orders Harbor Tug

The Royal Thai Navy has ordered a new 32-meter tug from shipbuilder Italthai Marine Limited of Thailand, announced the vessel’s designer, Robert Allan Ltd.   Italthai Marine,

Eastern Launches Tug for Suderman & Young

Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. announced it has launched escort tug Triton for Suderman & Young Towing Company on September 11, 2015.   The launch ceremony


Captain of Ill-fated El Faro was Known as Trusted Mariner

The captain of the ill-fated cargo ship that sank in a hurricane off the Bahamas with no survivors last week was an experienced and highly trusted mariner who had spent a lifetime on the water,

Collision Course with a Hurricane: How Doomed US Ship Met its End

The ill-fated U.S.-flagged El Faro cargo ship sunk by Hurricane Joaquin was sailing at near full speed into the center of the storm before it lost propulsion amid mountainous waves and brutal winds,

Chiarello: TOTE Continues Support to El Faro Families

Anthony Chiarello, President & CEO of TOTE, owner of the cargo ship presumed to have sunk with 33 mariners aboard last week amid Hurricane Joaquin, issued a statement

Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Repair Ship Simulators Sonar
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: 0.1847 sec (5 req/sec)