The Maid of the Mist boats that bring tourists to the base of Niagara Falls are going electric.
The company on Friday announced plans to launch two zero-emission passenger vessels during the coming tourist season. The boats will be powered by high-capacity battery packs.
The boats are the first of their kind to be built in the U.S., and are currently under construction by the Burger Boat Company in Manitowoc, Wisc, according to the Governor’s office.
The new vessels are expected to go into service in mid-September and replace the existing diesel-engine vessels that will operate on the lower Niagara River until then.
The Swiss technology company ABB is supplying the lithium-ion battery packs and an onshore charging system. The batteries will be recharged for seven minutes after each trip.
The Maid of the Mist first launched in 1846.