A new 17-foot rigid hull inflatable rescue boat is in Nanaimo Fire Rescue service. Photo courtesy City of Nanaimo.

A new 17-foot rigid hull inflatable rescue boat is in Nanaimo Fire Rescue service. Photo courtesy City of Nanaimo.

Over the last month, Nanaimo Fire Rescue crews have been getting themselves familiar with a new inland water rescue boat now in service.

The City of Nanaimo says the 17-foot rigid hull inflatable has an outboard motor equipped with a jet drive instead of a propeller drive, increasing access through extremely shallow depths.

“Nanaimo Fire crews are trained and prepared to respond to emergencies, including assisting someone who is in trouble in our city lakes,” Nanaimo Fire Chief Karen Fry said in a statement.

“Every year, we are called for incidents where someone has capsized a boat or kayak and may not be adequately prepared or wearing flotation devices.”

The new boat replaces a smaller zodiac boat that had been in use for more than 15 years.

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