Smoother waters ahead: New rescue boat arrives on Marco Island

Members of Marco Island’s Fire Department and EMS get a first look at the new fire-rescue boat on Wednesday. Clockwise from the back are Capt. Paul MacMillan, Diver/Engineer Dustin Beatty, Capt. Chris Crossan, Lt. Isabelle Favier and Capt. David Batiato. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Members of Marco Island’s Fire Department and EMS get a first look at the new fire-rescue boat on Wednesday. Clockwise from the back are Capt. Paul MacMillan, Diver/Engineer Dustin Beatty, Capt. Chris Crossan, Lt. Isabelle Favier and Capt. David Batiato. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Boat 50, Marco Island Fire Department’s new rescue boat, is docked at Walker’s Hideaway Marina Wednesday to be unpacked. The boat has an open cockpit, two side-by-side life support treatment beds and a float-on platform at the stern. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Boat 50, Marco Island Fire Department’s new rescue boat, is docked at Walker’s Hideaway Marina Wednesday to be unpacked. The boat has an open cockpit, two side-by-side life support treatment beds and a float-on platform at the stern. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Members of Marco Island’s Fire Department and EMS get a first look at the new fire-rescue boat on Wednesday. Clockwise from the back are Capt. Paul MacMillan, Diver/Engineer Dustin Beatty, Capt. Chris Crossan, Lt. Isabelle Favier and Capt. David Batiato. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Members of Marco Island’s Fire Department and EMS get a first look at the new fire-rescue boat on Wednesday. Clockwise from the back are Capt. Paul MacMillan, Diver/Engineer Dustin Beatty, Capt. Chris Crossan, Lt. Isabelle Favier and Capt. David Batiato. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Marco Island Fire Chief Mike Murphy, right, watches Mike Welsh, project manager from MetalCraft Marine, explain the day and night scanning capabilities of the new fire-rescue vessel that arrived on Wednesday. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Marco Island Fire Chief Mike Murphy, right, watches Mike Welsh, project manager from MetalCraft Marine, explain the day and night scanning capabilities of the new fire-rescue vessel that arrived on Wednesday. Cheryl Ferrara/Eagle Correspondent

Two women injured in a boating accident off Keeywadin Island Wednesday may be the last medical passengers transported by Marco Island’s old rescue boat.

While the women were being shuttled to a waiting ambulance on backboards stretched between the forward gunwales of the old boat, a new 34-foot, 3-inch MedStorm rescue vessel was rolling onto Marco Island.

The vessel, designated “Boat 50” for Marco’s Fire Station, was lowered into the water at Rose Marina and docked at Walker’s Hideaway Marina next to Marco Island’s Fire Station 51.

Fire Chief Mike Murphy said the new boat should be in service by Feb. 3.

“The new vessel is well equipped to handle boating emergencies and superlative patient care and rescue,” said Murphy as he inspected the advanced life support treatment area.

Two or three patients on backboards can receive emergency medical treatment while the boat is in transit to landside transportation, he said.

Captain Tom Bogan of the Fire Department will be responsible for staff training and vessel operations.

On Wednesday, Bogan worked with Mike Welsh, project manager from MetalCraft Marine that designed and produced the vessel. Welsh flew to Marco while the boat was transported 1,600-miles from Kingston, Ontario, where it was assembled.

The Medstorm was built in Canada but has all American-made parts and metal, he said. The aluminum vessel has a stern platform designed to float patients onto the craft. Powered by twin Alamarine Jet drives, it can reach a top speed of 42 mph.

Welsh demonstrated the vessel’s navigation and search capabilities including an infrared heat sensor that detects life forms floating in the water day or night. The vessel is equipped with underwater lights for night searches and docking.

Bogan said the distance from Station 51 on East Elkcam Circle to the Marco River is about a half mile. To the Gulf of Mexico, he estimated the distant to be about three miles.

In addition to rescue, the vessel can pump 1,500 gallons per minute through two bow mounted nozzles when aimed at burning vessels or fires on the shore. It also is equipped with 40 gallons of Class B foam for fire suppression.

A dock with lift will be constructed on the south side seawall of Station 51’s property to secure the boat when it is not in service.

It will take at least two weeks to ready the vessel. During that time, fire-rescue staff will conduct sea trials and training, and equip the vessel for service.

A dedication ceremony will be held at 3 p.m., Monday, Feb. 3, at the Marco Island Yacht Club. The public is invited and the Fire Department plans to allow individuals onto the vessel and perhaps offer short trips until nightfall.

The vessel will be christened the “J.W. Adams” in honor of Jerry Adams, a Marco firefighter/engineer, who lost his battle with cancer on Feb. 15, 2013.

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Comments » 18

happyhorowitz34145 writes:

Are you serious!
Million $ Murphy gets a new boat?
Are they going to auction off the old boat?
I'll buy it!

happyhorowitz34145 writes:

By the way!
Why is MFD responding to Keewadin, when that is Isles of Capris response?

laslic writes:

Where will the money come from to build a boat lift? Next they'll need to build a shelter for THE boat and give raises to all the operators!! Murphy's Millions - more to come. I hope council turn them down.

MrBreeze writes:

They should have named it the "Bankrupt City" as that is where we are headed. Can we look up the lawyer for the City of Detroit and get him on standby.

1Paradiselost writes:

Na.. Just raise the water rates to pay for everything!
This is just a bad dream, when we wake, we will all be poor!

ed34145 writes:

Have any of you ever really looked at your tax bill? If not, do so and see what you pay to the City vs what you pay to the county and the county school system.

Konfuzius writes:

Much more than the boat costs are the expensive s to manage and maintain the boat. Means finally more staff and much much more taxpayers money.
But by the boating skills of my American friends it is maybe a good investment.
I learned that this boat is purchased NOT for primarily fire fighting or rescue not exist on Marco Island but medicals treatments of s----- boater living a lot on Marco Island and brought themselves in trouble.

marco826 writes:

$400,000 fire rescue boat, $219,000 City Manager....We are so fat and happy here on Marco spending the peoples money....Soon we'll paint the streets with Gold....

WizeOlMarco writes:

Hopefully, the boat is never needed.

MrBreeze writes:

I am waiting for the first time the boat will be used for a "pleasure outing" by a city employee. A training exercise with fishing poles and water skies.

You know it will happen it is just when.

ajm3s writes:

in response to ed34145:

Have any of you ever really looked at your tax bill? If not, do so and see what you pay to the City vs what you pay to the county and the county school system.

I do, in 2000 Marco Island was 10% of total tax bill, today in 2013 it is 16%.

And we still pay more money to Collier County than we use in services, even considering the fact that Collier County encompasses a vast amount of land outside of Marco Island.

Just consider the number of Collier County EMS vehicles that are on Marco Island....ONE!

Konfuzius writes:

in response to ajm3s:

I do, in 2000 Marco Island was 10% of total tax bill, today in 2013 it is 16%.

And we still pay more money to Collier County than we use in services, even considering the fact that Collier County encompasses a vast amount of land outside of Marco Island.

Just consider the number of Collier County EMS vehicles that are on Marco Island....ONE!

And don't forget the security junky account:

$ 16 000 000 for the Sheriff department and
$ 7 000 000 for MIPD!

Konfuzius writes:

in response to marco826:

$400,000 fire rescue boat, $219,000 City Manager....We are so fat and happy here on Marco spending the peoples money....Soon we'll paint the streets with Gold....

The Incas used gold for their streets. Marco Island will use platinum. Just the best of the best like CC Joe Batte said.

happyhorowitz34145 writes:

How long does it take to get a $400K boat during low tide to go from behind the fire station on Elkcam to Greenbrier or the end of the waterway on Madagascar?
30-45 minutes? Longer?
Who mans this boat?
Are more fire personnel being hired to man this boat?
What's next? A water truck?

OldMarcoMan writes:

When did we vote on this?

ajm3s writes:

in response to OldMarcoMan:

When did we vote on this?

It was one of the first confirmations with the NEW council. It was a sad night to watch the new incumbents follow in suit to believing a custom built jet propulsion boat with serious electronics is only 5K more to operate than the existing poorly equipped Donzi.

The spreadsheet for comparison was pathetic!

A sad day for those who had faith in prudent and efficient government, especially given an ALS rescue boat at the Capri fire house provided by the county is available.

But we all know the infighting amongst departments and county.

Speaking of county assets, I wonder if the city is aggressively pursuing getting the 2nd EMS vehicle from the county.

Promises? Its only money!

OldMarcoMan writes:

Lie Cheat Steal
I seem to recall a rule that if something was going to cost over $500,000 the people had to vote on it.
It was then brought up that the City could pretty much say they were paying any old price for things and just make it up in change orders.
Looks like the new Council is just as corrupt as all the rest.
Only difference is this group was supposed to be so open and honest. Looks like they lied from the start.

captnjimbo writes:

I think we voted when a cruiser caught fire in Caxambas pass and police/fire were impotent because their equipment was not up to the task.

This is a water oriented community.

Nice boat!

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