Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shipping Sectors To Split Costs For Neah Bay Rescue Tug

When private industry takes up the cost of maintaining and emergency-rescue tug at Neah Bay in northwest Washington state on July 1, owners of oil tankers will pay 57 percent of the cost and owners of non-tanker vessels will pay the remaining 43 percent.

The cost-sharing is part of an agreement negotiated by representatives of the various sectors of the shipping industry. The shipping industry officials have also inked a one-year deal with Foss Maritime to provide the Neah Bay rescue tug service.

The state has provided all funding for the tug service, to the tune of roughly $3.6 million a year for the past two years, but Washington State Governor Christine Gregiore decided in March 2009 to shift the entire cost of the Neah Bay tug to the maritime industry as of July 1, 2010.

The 40-year-old 115-foot Jeffery Foss is expected to take station at Neah Bay on July 1. The Jeffery Foss takes over from the Crowley Maritime tug Hunter, which had been performing the Neah Bay rescue service under contract with the state.