NYC Council members question safety of new SI Ferries after fire broke out on new ship

NYC Council members question safety of new SI Ferries after fire broke out on new ship

New York Metropolis Council members plan to carry a public listening to on the Staten Island Ferry fire that left roughly 850 passengers stranded in New York Harbor final month.

Throughout a Thursday look on WNYC’s All Issues Thought of, Staten Island Councilmember David Carr mentioned he plans to herald Division of Transportation officers to reply questions concerning the Dec. 22 blaze, which broke out within the ship’s engine room throughout a Staten Island-bound journey. The fire pressured the ship to anchor close to Bayonne, New Jersey.

The incident is beneath investigation by the Coast Guard.

Carr accused DOT officers of failing to reveal particulars concerning the fire — and mentioned he was involved as a result of the fire broke out on the Sandy Floor, one of the Staten Island Ferry’s latest ships. The vessel price $85 million and entered service final 12 months.

“A ‘no, everything’s fine, we don’t need to provide any accountability on our part for our decisions’ — that’s a non-starter,” mentioned Carr. “We’re a Council, we’re a legislative body, we have a legitimate reason to exercise our oversight authority here and we absolutely will.”

Councilmembers haven’t set a date for the listening to.

Per week after the fire, Staten Island’s three Metropolis Council members together with Transportation Committee chair Selvena Brooks-Powers urged the DOT to launch a full investigation into metropolis’s three latest ferries. The group in a letter demanded the probe “to ensure there are no systemic flaws with these vessels that could potentially precipitate a disaster.”

The Sandy Floor is one of the three new “Ollis Class” ferries. The opposite two are the SSG Michael Ollis and the Dorothy Day.

The Sandy Floor started service in June, whereas the Michael Ollis made its inaugural journey in February and remains to be in service, in accordance with the DOT. The Dorothy Day has not entered service.

DOT spokesperson Mona Bruno mentioned the Sandy Floor fire just isn’t a trigger for concern for the opposite Ollis Class ferries.

“Safety is DOT’s top priority, and we are following all protocols as we work closely with the Coast Guard and the National Transportation Safety Board on the investigation,” mentioned Bruno.

The Coast Guard’s investigation of the fire might take months or years to finish, mentioned Petty Officer third Class Logan Kaczmarek, a spokesperson for the Coast Guard.

Carr mentioned he needs to know the coaching crew members undergo on an everyday foundation, in addition to the mechanics of the new ships.

The Marine Engineers’ Useful Affiliation – the union that represents a lot of the Staten Island ferry crew – mentioned they had been additionally involved concerning the new Ollis ferries and claimed the DOT had didn’t correctly prepare the crew on the new fleet.

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