Fire Department Getting New Boat for Water Rescue
City gets $48,419 grant to help pay for the $64,000 craft.
It may be a little too chilly to think about boating the waters of Lake Erie.
But that’s not the case for the Lakewood Fire Department.
With the help of a $48,419 port security grant, city council recently OK’d the purchase of a duel-engine Ribcraft rescue boat that Fire Chief Scott Gilman said will allow the department to quickly respond to calls on Lake Erie and the Rocky River.
The department already has a 12-foot, single-engine boat, but at more than 20 years old, it’s nearing the end of the line.
And it’s slow.
The new 21-foot boat comes twin-engines to cut down on response times. It will also be equipped with special hoses that can fight fires using water from Lake Erie.
Staffed by crews from Station No. 2, the new boat will likely be docked at the mouth of the Rocky River, where emergency rescue crews will be able to quickly respond to calls, Gilman said.
“It will tremendously improve safety,” Gilman said. “Now, we’ll be able to get out to (an emergency) rapidly.”
The total cost of the boat is $64,000, but it comes with all the equipment included. The city’s share was a 25 percent match, or $16,140.
“This is part of our water rescue plan of 2012,” Gilman said. “When we have a rescue, we don’t want to have redundancy, so we’re partnering with Rocky River.”
“It gives us a safer platform to work with.”