Do these NY Waterway ferries look safe to you?

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Update January 9, 2013

With the crash of the ferry boat at pier 11 of the South Street Seaport, the safety of our ferry boats on the Hudson River slip is once again brought into question (see below).

June 24, 2011

By Steven Greer, MD

In the wake of numerous discount tour bus massacres along New Jersey highways killing dozens of passengers traveling to casinos aboard astonishingly unregulated buses, one with a convicted murderer as a bus drivers, are our waterways also vulnerable?

Interstate business such as furniture movers, trucking, busing, etc. are often unregulated as they fall outside the jurisdiction of cities and states. The NY Waterway ferries, spanning New Jersey and New York via the Hudson River, are regulated by the Port Authority mostly.

A CB1 spokesperson wrote, “What is similar (to the tour buses that crashed) is that the city can’t regulate the buses in some instances because they are inter-state and need to be regulated at a federal level. Similarly, the city can’t set rules for vessels operating on the river because it is not city jurisdiction. The Port Authority has leverage over them but we don’t always have the leverage we need with the PA in this area. We raised issues pertaining to noise and pollutants from the boats in several meetings with operators and government agencies. They made some changes including putting some new, cleaner boats into service and retiring older boats. More needs to be done and I expect that we will hold additional meetings as it is an ongoing effort. Regulations are not as stringent as they could be.

With that in mind, we have been noticing the decrepit conditions of these NY Waterway ferries that dock by Vesey Street and the Irish Memorial.

You decide for yourself. Do these boats, filthy in diesel soot, paint peeling from all surfaces, do they look safe to you?

(Click images to expand and fully appreciate the dilapidated status of the boats)

George Washington has seen better days

GW 2

The real Senator Lautenberg looks younger than this boat

SEn Lautenberg

Brooklyn given a bad name here?

Brooklyn close

Brooklyn tail

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5 Responses to Do these NY Waterway ferries look safe to you?

  1. fletchsan says:

    I don’t know, Liz. The Hudson River waterway ferries seemed perfectly capable of helping out Captain Sully when he landed his plane back in Jan 2009 and saved all those people. But it’s always good to push for better regulation and clearer responsibility – especially when you’re talking about the Port Authority. And the NYC DOT has clearly had problems, both with operators and mechanical issues, with the Staten Island Ferry fleet, however, those vessels travel much further and seem older. But comparing Chinatown buses (for example) to these waterway ferries that shuttle btwn Jersey and BPC is somewhat of a reach (a long reach).

  2. admin says:

    The act of one captain has nothing to do with whether the company is running decrepit unsafe ferries. The comparison to other unregulated interstate vehicles is no stretch whatsoever.

  3. fletchsan says:

    Actually, it was the simultaneous acts of several ferry captains aiding Captain Sully after he successfully landed his plane in the Hudson. In fact, I believe those ferry boats were the first on the scene as people fled out of the fuselage and onto the wings of downed plane (still surreal to think about that incident). And ‘m sure maintenance and safety procedures between river ferries and passenger buses are very different. But I agree, those ferries are loud, kick up a lot of smoke, and look beat up.

  4. admin says:

    Again, the actions of good citizens have nothing to do with the management of a ferry company and whether proper regulations are assuring safe maintenance. Also, with just one captain piloting high speed watercraft, that is a disaster waiting to happen, ala the Staten Island ferry deaths

  5. fran says:

    dear fletscan….we have been having this well documented argument for years….and have been told lie after lie…..they are polluters….noisy and were supposed to be replaced years ago….we have documents to prove that is is so….avail at your request…..this is a neighborhood filled with children and the pollution is mind blowing…but none of these people live here so they do not care……

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