Harckham secures funding for fireboat


CROTON-ON-HUDSON – State Senator Pete Harckham has secured a $100,000 state grant to help the Croton-on-Hudson Fire Department purchase a new fireboat to replace an existing vessel in its marine operations that was retired last summer after 30 years of service.

“As more residents take to area waterways for recreation, the need for greater protection capabilities grows as well,” said Harckham. “The Croton Fire Department responds to emergencies both inland and on the Hudson River all year long, and so I was pleased to be able to help them attain state funding for the new fireboat, which will protect the public while easing the burden on the local taxpayers as well.”

The Croton-on-Hudson Fire Department operates three marine units – a fireboat and two inflatable rafts, one of which operates with an outboard motor. The rafts patrol and respond to emergencies on the Croton River and in the Croton Reservoir. The larger fireboat, equipped with a powerful water cannon to fight onboard boat fires and blazes along the shoreline, is used on the Hudson River, where the department will respond to incidents stretching from the Bear Mountain Bridge to the Governor Mario Cuomo Tappan Zee Bridge.

“With more than four miles of a river to protect at its widest point, and incidents involving motorboats, sailboats and personal watercrafts on the rise, we need a vessel that can handle every emergency imaginable,” said John Munson, Croton-on-Hudson’s fire chief.

Munson noted that the Croton fireboat normally responds to about 20 serious incidents on the Hudson each year, and regularly joins rivertown fire departments and the Westchester County Public Safety Department on mutual aid calls.

“Our village residents and many others will be well-served by a new fireboat with state-of-the-art functions and capabilities,” said Croton-on-Hudson Mayor Brian Pugh. “Being able to respond quickly to boating emergencies on the Hudson River, as well as to fires along the river, will potentially save lives and protect businesses and properties.”

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