BELFAST, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - The Front Street Shipyard in Belfast put its newest addition to work this week. A travel lift that can hoist ships weighing more than 450 tons.
The new lift system moves the large vessels into the facility's climate-controlled buildings for maintenance and work. Once ships are hoisted, the air lift is controlled by an electronic remote system manned by a single worker. So far two yachts, both around 120 feet long have been moved with the system. Shipyard President, JB Turner, hopes the new lift will attract other large ship owners to Maine.
"So it's pretty exciting to have a new piece of equipment that's operating at its perfect capacity and being able to fill it right away," said Turner.
Denise Serls of Florida watched her 215 ton boat be carried into Belfast Bay Thursday morning. While at the shipyard the boat had maintenance work done, as well as a new paint and wax job.
"It's convenient," said Serls. "We like Belfast, we come here a lot."
The only other lift system in New England that can handle ships of the same size is located in Newport, Rhode Island.