I don't know whether local residents should take this as a compliment or an insult, but the DEP has named its newest sludge (aka sewage or human waste) carrying vessel The Red Hook. And to top it off, they didn't hold the ceremony for the newly commissioned boat here - they did it at Ward's Island.
On a more positive note, NY's waterways seem to be cleaner than they've been in at least 100 years, in part thanks to vessels like these and the water treatment plants they service.
If you have an interest in learning what happens to your waste after you flush it or a history of sludge in NYC waterways, then I highly recommend checking out this NYTimes article about the new boat. Here's a snippet:
The Red Hook is the third active vessel in the department’s marine fleet, which transports more than two million gallons of sludge per day. The vessel is more than 350 feet long, about 53 feet wide and slightly more than 21 feet deep. Its eight storage tanks can accommodate 150,000 cubic feet, or about 1.2 million gallons, of sludge. The vessel weighs more than 2,098 tons and is designed to travel at 12.75 knots, or about 15 miles per hour.
Has this been profiled on the tv show Dirty Jobs yet? Major respect and thanks goes to the crews of these boats and the workers of the water treatment plants for keeping our waterways clean!
Picture above from the DEP, via the NYTimes City Room Blog