Pittsburgh considering purchase of fire boat

Pittsburgh considering purchase of fire boat

PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh is in the preliminary stages of considering the purchase of a fire boat, according to Pittsburgh Fire Bureau Chief Darryl Jones.

Target 11 has learned that the city’s equipment leasing authority has allocated $400,000 to buy a fire boat.

“We've had incidents on the water in the past, so we are going to take a hard look at it and we haven't jumped to any conclusions yet,” Darryl said.

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Public Safety Director Wendell Hissrich believes the fire boat would be a valuable asset for fighting fires on the water, but also beside them.

“It's also able to pump the water from the river onto a fire on land. It serves two purposes just like having a fire pumper on the street or a hydrant we have unlimited resources of water,” Hissrich said.

Hissrich said the fire boat could have been used to fight a recent fire in a building along the river in Penn Hills where a dozen tanker trucks had to haul water.

A boater and retired Pittsburgh firefighter supported the potential purchase.

“If there's no capability to put a fire out other than a fire extinguisher we have (on the boat), there's plenty of half-million dollar boats down here,” said Dan Hennessy.