NORWALK, Conn. — Norwalk Police introduced the newest boat in its Marine Unit on Tuesday along with the two officers recently appointed to handle the department’s waterfront operations.
The 27-foot-long boat, constructed in 2005, initially was used by the U.S. Coast Guard. It was refurbished at a boatyard in New Haven and put into service by Norwalk about two months ago.
“It’s a great rescue boat,” said Officer Owen Lee during the boat’s introduction at the Visitors Docks in Veterans Memorial Park in East Norwalk.
Lee was on hand to describe the boat along with the unit’s new commander, Sgt. Justin Bisceglie.
The veteran head of the unit, Sgt. Peter Lapak, retired Sept. 1, along with long-serving member Officer Michael Silva.
The boat was acquired after the city last year received a nearly $400,000 federal grant for its purchase.
The Marine Unit also has a custom-designed 35-foot-long, aluminum hull patrol boat it purchased in 1991 and a Zodiac rigid-hull inflatable boats put into service in 2008.
The new vessel, a SAFE Full Cabin manufactured by Safe Boats International of Bremerton, Wash., is powered by two refurbished outboard motors providing a combined 450 horsepower.
Lee said the aluminum-hull boat is rated for a top speed of 48 miles per hour.
He noted the boat’s cabin can be completely sealed from the elements, unlike the unit’s center console Zodiac. However, it has limited deck space, so for transporting for the department’s dive team, for example, the Zodiac would be employed, he said.
Bisceglie said the boat has 100-gallon fuel tank, giving substantial cruising range.