BOWLEYS QUARTERS, Md. (WMAR) — After their most-used water rescue boat had to be put out of commission last September, the Bowleys Quarters Marine Emergency Team has been crowd funding and applying for grants to get a new versatile vessel...and the wait is over. Their new state-of-the-art vessel arrives Thursday.
They are under contract with Silver Ships Inc. to buy a rigid hull inflatable boat with an on-board fire pump that can flow near 700 gallons per minute. The boat will be stocked full of basic life support equipment and can transport up to six victims including two full spinal immobilized patients.
Captain Shannon Stallings said fundraising for the $300,000 vessel included two state grants, capital improvement funds from the Community Volunteer Fire Department of Bowleys Quarters, a maritime community fundraising campaign, and a hefty $49,000 discount from Silver Ships Inc.
Their former boat was a converted fishing boat and it responded to more that 250 Marine emergencies in the last five years. It reached the end of it's useful life in 2018 and was removed from service following catastrophic engine failure in September.
Stallings said the addition of the new fire/rescue vessel will drastically reduce response times and increase the quality of service to Marine Emergency Team 21's 90-square-mile service area. Marine Emergency Team 21 expects the new vessel to be in service serving the upper bay maritime community by Memorial Day, following all the support training and outfitting that needs to be done.