Marine Unit

 

The Marine Unit, the Babylon Fire Department's newest organization, was organized on October 12, 2005 under the direction of Chief Jeffrey C. Weber.  The Marine Unit was deemed necessary as the need for fire and rescue protection for the waterfront of the Village of Babylon and Town of Babylon’s barrier islands became more apparent. 

Firefighting from a boat was not completely new to the Babylon Fire Department.  Over the years the department has owned a wooden rowboat and 8 foot inflatable raft, however this was the first time an organization was formed for the sole purpose of fire boat protection.

A committee of experienced fireman with boating experience was formed to convert a retired Bay Constable boat donated by the Town of Babylon into a fire boat.  The committee took the challenge and completely restored the 24 foot Privateer.  During the restoration the committee completely stripped the boat down to a bare minimum.  Among the many challenges to the boat were fiberglass restoration, adding a new gas tank, and rebuilding the deck and pilothouse.  A 225 HP Evinrude outboard motor was rebuilt and installed.  Most of the items installed on the boat were either donated by other organizations, used equipment, spare equipment, or purchased through grants.  A 450 GPM pump was purchased and installed on the stern with a 3 ½ inch standpipe deck gun nozzle installed on the bow.  This enabled the boat to shoot water longer distances at a safer distance from danger.

On October 27, 2005 unit 1-2-12 was launched at the Village boat ramp and placed into service.  In Winter 2006 the Marine Unit was put to the test when it was called to Amityville for a large brush fire on an uninhabited island.  The Marine Unit was able to pump water on the fire and keep it under control.  The Marine Unit has operated at several house fires on barrier islands, boat fires and brush fires on the Great South Bay, rescued boaters after accidents, and assisted the Rescue Squad by bringing patients to shore.  The Marine Unit has been an integral part of keeping the waterfront homes and recreational boaters of the Village of Babylon safe.

The Marine Unit is comprised of members from each of the six companies, each member has successfully taken a boating safety course as well as fireboat training classes.  The first officers were Co-Captains Richard Santos and [Ex-Chief] Robert Kraft Jr.  Other officers have included Frank D. Bustamante, Joseph Fraccalveiri, Eric Price, and Robert Fredericks.

 

1-2-12 being launched for the first time

 

 

 

 

 

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