by Ray Pauley
Public Information Officer
Grand Island Fire Co.
On Friday, July 8, Grand Island Fire Co. marine unit personnel responded to a call for assistance from the U.S. Coast Guard for a "watercraft in distress." The incident occurred at 11:23 p.m. near Strawberry Island in the Niagara River.
GIFC Assistant Fire Chief Chris Soluri coordinated efforts to locate the vessel, which was found stranded in shallow shoals offshore because of a mechanical failure. Although one of the three Buffalo boaters was diabetic, he was not in need of emergency medical service treatment, according to GIFC paramedic Jon Cinelli.
The stranded boaters were then turned over to the USCG and GIFC MU-1 rescuers. The rescuers and Rural Metro returned to service on Saturday at 1:11 a.m.