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Here was the first in the series.  Recognize the orange hull behind the orange inflatable?

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It appeared to be a drill . . . at the St. George ferry racks of John J. Marchi.  If anyone ends up in the frigid waters of the sixth boro, I presume this is the procedure.  I missed the actual lowering.

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As I left the west side of the terminal to see what tug had delivered the fuel barge (Answer:  Eastern Dawn . . . 8th foto here), I saw the inflatable westbound and then

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moments later, eastbound.

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By the time I moved around to this side of the ferry racks again, said inflatable was hoisted, ready to the next drill or the next emergency.

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All fotos by Will Van Dorp.   Here’s a video of deckhands talking about a rescue a few years back.

I’d never seen the likes of Ole Mule, below, headed along the Jeffersonville, Indiana, side of the Ohio before last month. I’ll explain my theory of its function at end of this post so’s you can guess first. I’d held this foto back because I thought to get back to the Ohio watershed this summer, but alas . . . fall or next year.

While the focus remains on these “unnatural” critters, check out the name someone had second thoughts about. Here’s an article discussing mules v. horses on the old Erie Canal.

Eastern Dawn, ex-Delta Mule, ex-Grand Eagle, operates out of Erie Basin.

Eastern Dawn pushed a bargeload of consumables to Governor’s Island for City of Water Day.

You’d think more stuff would move locally through the sixth boro.

So Ole Mule is a dock dredge, guessing by a close-up of the sign on her stern. And I suppose she runs in reverse scraping silt out of a slip to resettle elsewhere downstream?

Photos, WVD.

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