Decision Expected Soon on Fire Boat Moored in Hudson in Sleepy Hollow
by Rick Pezzullo –
A report is expected soon from the Army Corps of Engineers regarding an historic fire boat that has been moored at the end of a pier near Horan’s Landing and the River Walk in Sleepy Hollow since late November.
The John D. McKean FDNY fire boat, which was utilized in rescue efforts following the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in Manhattan and the “Miracle on the Hudson” emergency airplane landing on January 15, 2009, hasn’t moved since showing up after Thanksgiving.
Several residents from River Street have publicly complained about the 129 feet long, 50 feet high water craft blocking their scenic views, but village officials have maintained they have no control over the river, only the pier where the boat is docked. The pier falls under Sleepy Hollow’s authority since it was part of the site plan that was approved for River House.
“The Board of Trustees of the Village of Sleepy Hollow would be honored to have the John D. McKean, FDNY’s historic fireboat, call Sleepy Hollow its new home. Before that can become a reality, the owners of the McKean must satisfy regulatory issues raised by the Army Corps of Engineers and the Village of Sleepy Hollow,” Mayor Ken Wray and the Board of Trustees posted on the village’s website in late February.
“Once that process is completed, we look forward to working with all the stakeholders to find the best place for the McKean to be moored, so she can be enjoyed by our residents and visitors to Sleepy Hollow’s riverfront for years to come,” they added.
Village Manager Anthony Giaccio, who said a few residents continue to question village officials about the fire boat, explained the Building Department has been working with the owners of the boat regarding modifications made to the pier that were done without approval.
Otherwise, the village’s hands are tied until the Army Corps of Engineers issues its decision.
“We do expect them to give us an answer soon,” Giaccio said.
One of the owners of the fire boat, Edward Taylor, who purchased it at an auction in March 2016 with Michael Kaphan, told trustees it would not be permanently moored in Sleepy Hollow. He said the fire boat would set sail for educational and social trips.