Port Authority launches locally-built patrol boat
The Prince Rupert Port Authority officially launched its new patrol boat on Thursday afternoon in front of a small crowd gathered at the Prince Rupert Marina.
After a traditional boat blessing by an elder from the Coast Tsimshian First Nations and a prayer from a Christian minister, the new boat was officially christened “The Charles Hays” by smashing a bottle of BC champagne on its bow.
Representatives from the port authority made speeches about the new boat emphasizing the fact that it had been built and equipped by businesses from Prince Rupert. Broadwater Industries began construction on the boat last June and was finished a couple weeks ago. The boat is custom-built for use by the Port Authority it is the largest boat the company has ever built, and it will even become their flagship.
Mike Collins is the lead ship builder at Broadwater, he says he’s proud of how the boat turned out.
“It’s been a great project, I really enjoyed it. It’s a good boat; it will be great for the port authority and great for the community,” says Collins.
According to port authority CEO Don Krusel, the new boat cost almost a half a million dollars, and was outfitted by local businesses. According to the CEO, Poseidon Marine Group did the cabinets and interior of the boat, the navigational equipment came from DC Marine Electronics, Bridgeview Marine supplied the engines, and Stuck On Designs created the graphics on the boat.
“We wanted to spend our money in the community, not just to create jobs, but to help develop skill-sets . . . This boat is an example of what is changing at the port and in the community; how the port and community is growing and improving,” says Krusel.
Some people had pointed out that the was being launched on the 99-year anniversary of the Titanic striking the iceberg that caused it to sink, killing the new patrol boat’s namesake, Charles Hays. Krusel joked that this wouldn’t be bad luck because the Titanic didn’t technically sink until the next day.
Now that the boat has been launched it will take over for the old Charles Hayes patrol boat, which is over 21 years old. Its duties will include escorting ships, clearing the harbour of debris and performing security patrols.