Category Archives: Blog

Brooklyn Blaze

The FDNY battled the 7-Alarm warehouse fire in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn from land and water. Engines and ladder trucks made little progress with their 1,000-gallons-per-minute nozzles…


… as strong west winds gusting over 30 knots kept fueling the inferno.

FDNY Marine Units responded to survey and attack from the East River.

The 65-foot fireboat ‘Bravest’ and the 140-foot ‘Fire Fighter II’ were stationed in the river upwind of the fire.

‘Fire Fighter II’ pumps 18,000 gallons-per-minute from her bow monitor, blasting the west-side of the building…

…successfully knocking down the exterior wall and fire behind it.

The warehouse is said to contain paper records from courts and hospitals, stacked in boxes from floor to ceiling. Twitter posts tagged #williamsburgfire showed embers being picked up as far as 2.5 miles downwind.
As firefighters keep dousing the building, the structure is expected to smolder for at least another couple of days.

New York Media Boat was on-scene for most of the day capturing images and video of the blaze.

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As Manhattan braces for the blizzard, we  head for the beach just south of the Statue of Liberty. Dressed in dry-suits and equipped with cameras and kites, we aimed to get some photos before it got dark. Unfortunately the wind hadn’t picked up just yet so Dariusz was a bit underpowered on the 10-meter Nobile kite. A cold but fun session!






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Harbor School adds Simulator

On Wednesday the New York Harbor School christened its new Bridge Simulator at the MAST Center on Governors Island.

Students now have the opportunity to hone their ship handling and navigation skills in the same high-tech virtual environment used by many professionals. The main TRANSAS bridge simulator system is set up in a separate room where five large flat-screen monitors line the walls providing a 160-degree view of the scenario. Four additional smaller stations are set up in an adjacent room, also complete with navigation charts, engine and rudder controls, and radar screens. All five stations are networked allowing, for example, a tanker, tugs and law enforcement vessels to simultaneously function within the same scenario.

Of course I had to try this out first-hand and selected a Coast Guard small boat, as it has similar handling parameters as the boats we operate here at New York Media Boat. Running north at 30 knots from Saint George towards lower Manhattan, the harbor looked strikingly familiar. The buoys, barges and skyline all appeared in perfect detail. I threw some hard turns for good measure and the boat reacted as expected. At times I forgot that I was standing on solid ground and even started feeling a bit nauseous, as we dialed the conditions up and encountered heavy seas heading for Buttermilk Channel.

What an excellent teaching tool to add to the already impressive curriculum Captain Aaron Singh and his team have put together for their students.

The $300,000 system was donated by the American Bureau of Shipping.


Captain Mark Phillips at the helm of the NY Harbor School Bridge Simulator

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Quantum of the Seas

At 11 times the size of a full-grown blue whale, Royal Caribbean’s ‘Quantum of the Seas‘ sailed into New York Harbor for the first time this morning, completing her maiden trans-Atlantic voyage.

Once past the Verrazano Narrows Bridge, the ‘North Star‘ glass capsule was raised on her top deck, providing passengers with a 360-degree view extending to the same height as the torch of the Statue of Liberty.

Complete with robotic bartenders, bumper cars, a FlowRider surf and RipCord iFly skydiving simulator, she also features 375 interior staterooms with virtual balconies, projecting real-time views of the ocean. Wifi and RFID luggage tags allow guests to track their bags right from a smartphone.

At 1,141 feet long, ‘Quantum of the Seas’ is now the largest cruise-ship on the Hudson River, a status previously held by Norwegian Cruise Line’s 1,068-foot ‘Norwegian Breakaway‘.

Her homeport is the Cape Liberty Cruise Port in Bayonne, New Jersey and she’ll be christened there later this week.





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Rider of the Storm

As the Nor’easter stalled offshore, slamming the Tri-State area with rain and 30+ knots of wind, Dariusz Garko launched his kite.

He’d been waiting for these conditions to kiteboard straight through New York Harbor and under the Verrazano Bridge on a course set for Coney Island — an unprecedented session.

Garko, a professional high-performance athlete, became a ‘Nobile Kiteboarding Ambassador‘ earlier this year. He launches right from his backyard, which slopes into New York Harbor.

For this downwind run, Garko chose a 2015 T5 7.5-meter kite and grabbed his NHP 134-cm board.

Staying clear of barges, ferries, and cargo ships, he shredded past the Statue of Liberty, skipping over the choppy Hudson at a solid 20 knots, occasionally throwing some huge aerial maneuvers for tug boat captains and commuters riding the Staten Island Ferry to enjoy.

We decided to chase him with New York Media Boat to document some of the action, and put our new OUTEX camera housings to the test.









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Expanding the Fleet

If anyone embodies the spirit of adventure, it’s Roald Amundsen. The Norwegian explorer was the first person to reach both the South and North Poles, and he made the first transit of the Northwest Passage.

That’s why we’ve named the latest addition to the New York Media Boat fleet in his honor. We’re happy to welcome the 7-meter NAVY RIB Amundsen to the family!

Two great captains, Ken Cholak and Eric Rosen, will be at the helm for many of Amundsen’s New York City adventures. It may not be the uncharted Arctic or Antarctic (though last winter’s iced-over Hudson was feeling quite polar), but we hope everyone who comes aboard experiences the thrill of discovery in their own way.

New York Media Boat

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Bill Clinton: Props for Pearls

Former President Bill Clinton visited the New York Harbor School on Governors Island to get a closer look at the school’s oyster hatchery.


Each year the Billion Oyster Project grows over 10 million bivalves in the brackish waters around Manhattan, teaching students to collect scientific data, hands-on restoration, and stewardship. The project was founded by the New York Harbor School and is a Clinton Global Initiative commitment to action.

Clinton was greeted by the students and Captain Aaron Singh while boarding the school’s ‘Privateer’ vessel docked at Pier25 in Tribeca.


The NYPD Harbor Unit provided security as the ‘Privateer’ ferried the 42nd President of the United States past One World Trade Center and around The Battery to Governors Island.



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Great North River Race


The tugs raced and pushed on the Hudson, and the crews had spinach eating, tattoo and line throwing contests.
Besides the regular harbor tugs, the ship that brought the biggest guns to the show was the US ARMY LT-803 Major General Anthony Wayne.


She took second in the race, but sure dominated the nose-to-nose pushing competition with her twin 11-foot diameter screws.


The Chief Warrant Officer closely monitored gauges in the engine room…


… as the skipper accepted our nose-to-nose challenge.

20140831_BjoernKils_ARMY_JA_1 20140831_BjoernKils_ARMY_JA_2 20140831_BjoernKils_ARMY_JA_3


For additional write-ups of this event — and cool stuff in general — check these awesome blogs!
- Tugster 1 & Tugster 2
- WindAgainstCurrent

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Rescue at South Street Seaport

On our 2pm Adventure Sightseeing Tour we were just off South Street Seaport when we spotted three people in the water near Pier 15. Although we had passengers on board, we felt compelled to assist. When we arrived, two men were in the water trying to keep an unconscious victim afloat. Apparently, he had been handling lines for a large vessel when a line snapped, knocking him into the water.

We threw a life-ring and float-line to the guys struggling to keep the victim’s face above the water, pulled them alongside our boat, and hailed the NYPD boat stationed below the Brooklyn Bridge. Other bystanders threw life-rings and lifejackets in the water to place beneath the victim.

The NYPD Scuba Unit arrived within moments and immediately deployed rescue swimmers, who pulled the victim onto New York Media Boat to assess injuries and administer oxygen. EMS and FDNY brought a backboard, stokes basket and stretcher and helped transfer him ashore and into a waiting ambulance. The whole response happened very quickly and was handled adeptly, with the victim ending up at Bellevue Hospital. He’s reported to be in stable condition.

We’re very thankful to our passengers for their patience while we assisted in this emergency, and as always impressed by the NYPD’s response and professionalism. They’re on the scene within minutes, even in the wee hours of the coldest days of the year — like this past New Year’s Eve, when a young guy drove his car into the chilly waters of the Morris Canal, or when a tugboat sank off the Long Island coast.




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Around Long Island Regatta 2014

NEW YORK, August 2 — Once again New York Media Boat covered the start of ‘The Around Long Island Regatta’, hosted by the Sea Cliff Yacht Club. The boats started six miles southeast off Rockaway Point, in twenty knots of wind, course set for Montauk. After rounding the eastern end of Long Island, they headed through ‘the race’ and west to cross the line in Mannhasett Bay. The gallery below may take a short while to load; 2013 photos here.

Full-resolution photos are available for purchase, please inquire with sail number or vessel name.
Photos by: Bjoern Kils / New York Media Boat ( / +1 732.586.7394)



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