Marion Fire Department replaces damaged patrol boat
Several months after losing a patrol boat in the winter storm of October 2017, Marion Fire Chief Brian Jackvony told the Board of Selectmen on March 6 that the department has acquired a new boat.
The boat, a Secure All-around Flotation Equipped (SAFE) boat, was acquired from the Department of Defense. Jackvony said that he made the application to the department as it was advertising surplus equipment, and found out the recently that his application had been accepted.
The 25-foot boat will be used by the Fire Department for routine patrolling and security, as well as water-related emergency responses. Mattapoisett and Wareham currently make use of similar boats.
The boat, Jackvony said, has been in the Plymouth County area. By state regulations, if the boat is not used in five years, it is considered "surplus," and can be handed off. "It was really good timing," Jackvony acknowledged.
The boat didn't cost anything, but it will need to be fitted with new motors and an inflatable "collar" (the flotation equipment on the edge of the boat). The total cost of refurbishment, Jackvony said, would be around $65,000, and the boat should have a life expectancy of about 20 years.
Considering that the Fire Department had originally budgeted about $116,000 to purchase a new boat, Jackvony said, it was more logical to refurbish the older boat and cut the required money in half.
"What would a boat like this run to buy new?" Selectman Jody Dickerson asked.
"Probably about $400,000" Jackvony told him.