Currently taking shape at Foss Maritime’s shipyard in Seattle are the Port of Long Beach’s new Robert Allan-designed fireboats. Once delivered in 2014, these will be amongst the world’s most powerful fireboats.
The ten water monitors that conspicuously surround the vessel’s superstructure have the ability to throw more than 41,000 gallons of water per minute at distances of up to 600 feet horizontally and 236 feet vertically.
These new vessels will replace the port’s 1988-vintage fireboats, Liberty and Challenger.
Two 2012 hp Caterpillar 3512C diesel engines and pair of Voith Schneider VSP 26GII/165 AE45 propellers will enable a top speed of approximately 12 knots. The design is based on the Voith Water Tractor principle currently in use at the Port of Los Angeles.
Rendering of the Voith Schneider Propeller (VSP)
- Length, overall 108 ft
- Length, waterline 100.75 ft
- Beam 35 ft
- molded Beam 34 ft
- waterline Depth 14.33 ft
- molded Draft 9.15 ft
- hull Draft 15.00 ft
- maximum Air Draft at DWL 45.00 ft
- Hull Construction Steel Hull/Aluminum Deckhouse
- Displacement 300 gross tons
Two of the four fire pumps are driven by the diesel engines however, in firefighting mode, the propulsion power is limited to approximately 25 percent with the remaining 75 percent available to the fire pumps.
This allows the fireboats to be positioned in a fuel-efficient manner, while at the same time increasing the vessels’ pumping power without requiring additional engines. As the VSP pitch can be altered, the fireboats can operate efficiently and safely under all operating conditions.
More about the Voith Water Tractor
The Port of Long Beach is the second largest port in the United States and served by more than 140 shipping lines with connections to 217 seaports worldwide. The port has ten piers, 80 berths, six container terminals equipped with 66 post-Panamax gantry cranes and one of the deepest dredged main channels in the U.S. at 76 feet.