SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) — A brand new fire boat is joining the San Francisco Fire Department.
The boat arrived Monday, and is the third boat in the fleet.
“It looked new and it was shiny,” tourist Teresa Mendez said.
The boat has caught the attention of many.
The 85-foot-long red and white two story vessel is equipped with water cannons and fire apparatus.
The ship will soon join the fire department’s two other fire boats – Phoenix, and Guardian on the bay waters.
San Francisco native Charles Love stopped to admire it.
“I thought it was a loaner, but it said San Francisco fire boat, and we don’t have that fire boat,” Love said.
The still nameless vessel was constructed in Seattle,
A port security grant covered a majority of the $11.8 million to pay for the fire boat.
When the Loma Prieta earthquake caused water lines to burst beneath the city – firefighters hooked up The Phoenix to a portable hydrant system, sparing the Marina from an even bigger fire.
There’s only one boat in service at a time. While the Guardian is docked behind fire station 35 at pier 23½, the Phoenix is in dry-dock.
The question still remains whether three fire boats are needed, and if the city can afford to pay for the upkeep of all three.
And, while the state of the art boat is an eye catcher, it’s still missing one very important part.
“If this is going to be a part of the SF first response team, it’s gotta have a name,” Love said.
The exact date of the christening has not been set, but it could be sometime in October.