Good Question: What’s next for the Spirit of Rochester?

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. — This good question is about a piece of history floating on the Genesee River.

Once, the Spirit of Rochester was the place to be, a busy tourist attraction with room for more than 500 people onboard. Now, the boat has transformed from a popular lunch and dinner cruise to an empty vessel. The Spirit of Rochester is a ghost of a bygone era but it’s still raising some questions.

Ron reached out, saying: “The Spirit of Rochester had been sitting in the Genesee River for years and doing nothing but rusting. Is there any plan to scrap it or at the very least get it out of the water?”

The 150-foot-long ship has been docked in the river since 2005, which is the last time it sailed.

As for Ron’s question about the future of the ship? It’s unclear.

Its previous owner and captain passed away in 2007. I tried contacting its current owner, but couldn’t reach him.

We do know that there have been issues in the past with vandalism on the vessel. We also know that when a boat sinks there can be a lot of costs and fees associated with recovering it.

So, it’s unclear what the future will hold for the Spirit of Rochester. This ship is not to be confused with Rochester’s infamous Fast Ferry, which had a similar name. Don’t try to get a glimpse of it for yourself, as it is not accessible to the public.

Let’s take an in-depth look at what happens if any boat sinks or needs to be removed from the water.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation says: “The DEC’s jurisdiction would be dependent on the situation and the variables involved. If the boat is blocking navigation, leaking fuel, or is a safety hazard it could then fall under DEC’s authority for oversight and potential enforcement, depending upon where the vessel is located.”

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