Fireboat Cotter Conservancy

Where's the Fireboat Cotter? Waterfront Fixture to Return this Month

Undergoing extensive repairs in Toronto

July 16, 2019 - 6:01 am
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Buffalo, N.Y. (WBEN) - Perhaps noticeably absent from the Buffalo waterfront when the tall ships were parading into the Outer Harbor on Independence Day was the familiar and welcoming 'spray' from the historic Fireboat Cotter.  The Cotter is currently in drydock in Toronto undergoing extensive restoration and repairs and should return to the Buffalo waterfront later this month.

The Fireboat Cotter Conservancy supports the historic vessel and a grant was secured to fund the repairs to the hull and propeller mechanisms of the giant steel icebreaking hull.

Upon arrival in Toronto, the Cotter entered a giant drydock in which the water was drained, exposing the steel hull for repairs that will strengthen the hull in addition to needed and important propeller and shaft work.

"We received a $500,000 dollar state grant from Assemblyman Sean Ryan," said Buffalo Fire Commissioner Bill Renaldo. "We're using it to get a lot of overdue work done. We got our best deal in Toronto," he said. The Cotter has been there since the middle of May.  

"It's kind of like when you take your car in for front brakes. You wind up needing back brakes and a new transmission and alternator. That's kind of what happened," said Renaldo.

When in port during the summer season, the Cotter is frequently seen along the Outer Harbor spraying water from its giant firefighting canons and entertaining guests on the water which helps support its upkeep.  During the winter season, the Cotter performs important icebreaking efforts along the harbor and in the Buffalo River.

At 118 years old, the Cotter is the oldest active fireboat in the country.  Renaldo said it pumps out as much water as 11 fire engines.  

These photos were taken by the Fireboat Cotter Conservancy suring its stay for work in Toronto.

 

 

 

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