FEBRUARY 14, 2017 — According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Pittsburgh, PA, "last last had a fireboat — and an inactive one at that — in 1973."
Now Superior, WI, based Lake Assault Boats has beaten out two other competitors and has been chosen to construct a 34-foot fireboat for the Pittsburgh Bureau of Fire
The fireboat will respond to emergencies and help manage fires on waterways, waterfronts, rail lines, and marinas that lie along the Allegheny and Monongahela Rivers, which join together in Pittsburgh to form the Ohio River.
The contract is valued at more than $540,000. The craft will be delivered in summer 2017.
"We are thrilled to be appointed by the City of Pittsburgh and its Equipment Leasing Authority to engineer and construct this extremely powerful fireboat to protect resources that lie along the city's iconic riverfront areas," said Chad DuMars, Lake Assault Boats vice president of operations. "Our team is especially excited to manufacture the first fireboat in its class capable of pumping up to 3,000 gallons of water per minute."
Once delivered, Lake Assault will provide three days of onsite training with Pittsburgh Bureau of Fire personnel.
"Pittsburgh hasn't had a fireboat in service in more than forty years," said Mr. DuMars, "and this purchase reflects a major commitment by the city to better protect vital resources that simply can't be reached by traditional firefighting apparatus."
The 34-foot fireboat is a deep V-hull configuration, with an 11-foot overall beam. The boat will be powered by twin Yamaha F300 4.2L V-6 outboard motors, capable of a top speed greater than 40 mph.
The firefighting system features a compact Hale 80FC pump flowing up to 3,000 gpm which is powered by a dedicated 6.6L Duramax V-8 diesel engine. The fire pump includes a 6-inch main discharge that feeds a number of outlets, including bow and stern mounted TFT Hurricane monitors, each capable of flowing 1,250 gpm.
The 11-foot long pilot master cabin features excellent outward visibility and includes a 15,000 BTU rooftop AC unit, an adjustable (and full suspension) operator's seat, additional bench seating, SCBA mounting brackets, a chart table with storage, and a cuddy cabin for general storage.
The craft also features Garmin electronics, including chart plotter, HD radar, sonar, and a forward looking infrared (FLIR) system, all controlled through 12- and 16-inch touchscreens.
Other notable features include a full complement of LED floodlights and spotlights, a raised engine compartment/work deck, an automatic engine compartment fire suppression system, a hinged radar arch, dive bottle racks, and a removable canvas awning.
Lake Assault Boats is a subsidiary of Capstan Corporation, which is also the parent company of Fraser Shipyards