Fire-class fireboat

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YTR561 Firebird in Halifax.jpg
CFAV Firebird in Halifax harbour
Class overview
Name: Fire-class fireboat
Builders: Vancouver Shipyards
Operators:  Royal Canadian Navy
In service: 1978-present
Completed: 2
Active: 2
General characteristics
Type: Fireboats/Yard tractor tugs
Displacement: 140 tonnes (138 long tons)
Length: 23.1 m (75 ft 9 in)
Beam: 6.4 m (21 ft)
Draught: 2.6 m (8 ft 6 in)
Propulsion: 2 × 365 hp azimuthing Z-drives
1 × hydraulic tunnel bow thruster
Speed: 11 knots (13 mph; 20 km/h)
Equipment: 3 × manually-controlled 3 inch (7.6 cm) water cannon
2 × diesel-driven fire pumps, 2,500 gpm @ 150 psi each

The Royal Canadian Navy operates two Fire-class fireboats/Yard tractor tugs. The two vessels are the CFAV Firebrand (YTR 562) and the CFAV Firebird (YTR 561).[1]

Firebird is based at CFB Halifax, and Firebrand at CFB Esquimalt.[1] According to the Canadian American Strategic Review the class was designed by naval architects Robert Allan Limited, and were built at Vancouver Shipyards in North Vancouver in 1978,[2] and later acquired by the Canadian Forces.

On 4 December 2012 the Department of National Defence published an enquiry for Canadian shipbuilders interested in building replacements for the Glen class tugs¸ and Fire-class fireboats.[3][4]

A single class would replace both the tugs and the fireboats, and would be operated by civilian crews. The replacement vessels would have water cannons that could be controlled remotely, by a single individual. The replacement vessels would have bollard pull of 40 tons—almost six times as much as the 7.5 tons the Fire-class vessels are capable of.


  1. ^ a b "Canadian Forces Small Ships — the Fire class YTR Rescue Boats". Canadian American Strategic Review. Archived from the original on 2008-03-02. Retrieved 2008-02-13. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Future CF Harbour Tugs – The Naval Large Tug Construction Project: Replacing the CF Glen and Fire Class Large Tugs – MERX P&A Notice". Canadian American Strategic Review. 2012-12-04. Archived from the original on 2012-12-23. 
  4. ^ "Future CF Harbour Tugs – The Naval Large Tug Construction Project". Canadian American Strategic Review. August 2013. Archived from the original on 2013-08-06. Note that the Naval Large Tug Construction Project is not part of the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy. Under Section 10 of the NSPS Umbrella Agreement, ships displacing less than 1,000 tonnes must go to competition outside NSPS-contracted shipyards. That was meant to spread the Federal spending among the smaller yards. That sounds good but DND wants all six Naval Large Tugs to be built by a single yard. So much for spreading it around.