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Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Great Lakes Towing Buys Historic Fireboat

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

November 21, 2023

(Photo: The Great Lakes Towing Company)

(Photo: The Great Lakes Towing Company)

The Great Lakes Towing Company (GLT) announced it has acquired a 62-year-old fireboat from the city of Cleveland, Ohio.

The vessel, Anthony J. Celebrezze, was constructed in 1961 by Paach Marine in Erie, Pa. and was used by the Cleveland Fire Department until it was replaced with a new vessel, Garret A. Morgan, in June 2023 and put up for auction.

Auction data shows the vessel was sold on November 14 for just over $41,000, including a 12.5% buyer's premium.

GLT said its Great Lakes Shipyard division is very familiar with the Anthony J. Celebrezze's systems and operation, having provided drydocking, maintenance and repair services to the vessel for decades. The 61-foot twin screw, 600 HP tug is equipped with four Detriot Diesel engines, two fire pumps and five monitors, providing a total of 6,000 gallons per minute of off-ship firefighting capacity.

GLT said it intends to utilize the vessel as a firefighting platform for response to shipboard or shoreside fires, particularly in ports where a high volume of winter ship repair work is performed. The company noted it can also utilize the fireboat to respond to fires aboard vessels that are underway.

In early 2022, GLT signed an exclusive agreement with Resolve Marine to provide OPA 90 salvage and marine firefighting (SMFF) services in U.S. Coast Guard District 9, which includes the five Great Lakes, Saint Lawrence Seaway and parts of the surrounding states. The joint arrangement ensures continuity of service for all Resolve Marine clients in Buffalo, Detroit, Lake Michigan, Sault Saint Marie and Duluth COTPs. Ships with vessel response plans for the Great Lakes COTP zones, even if they are not Resolve Marine clients, can also be served under the agreement.

GLT is the largest U.S. flag commercial tugboat operator on the Great Lakes, with more than 40 tugs stationed in 14 ports between Duluth, Minn. and Buffalo, N.Y. 

As part of its agreement with Resolve Marine, GLT stores a 20-foot container loaded with firefighting and dewatering pump systems at its Great Lakes Shipyard facilities in Cleveland. The container can be loaded aboard any tug to mobilize the equipment, which can then be put in service onsite to safely and efficiently mitigate damage from a fire or other incidents.

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