Friday, January 24, 2014

Vigor to Build 3 Tidewater Tugs

By Mark Edward Nero

Vigor Industrial said Jan. 22 that its large-scale metalworking division has been awarded a contract with Vancouver, Wash.-based Tidewater Barge Lines to build three new tugboats. Vigor Fab is expected to start construction Jan. 24 at the company’s Portland facility.

Although Tidewater has rebuilt and repowered several vessels in its fleet over the years, the tugs will be the first newly built vessels for the company in nearly three decades. Delivery of the first tug is expected in December 2014, with the other two to follow in 2015.

“We are eager to start our new build program and be able to put these tugs to work for our customers,” Tidewater President & CEO Bob Curcio said in a statement. “These tugs are a welcome addition to the growing Tidewater fleet. We are excited to make the investments necessary to address the needs of our customers.”

The state-of-the-art vessels were specially designed by CT Marine of Edgecomb, Maine, to service the Columbia River market. The tug engines are expected to be EPA Tier III compliant and provide upgraded environmental standards for cleaner emissions and a lower environmental impact. The design also features ergonomic accommodations and comforts proven to minimize fatigue and reduce injuries amongst crew.

The vessels are all designed with a length of 102 feet, a width of 38 feet and a draft of 11 feet. Each will have two Caterpillar 3516 Tier 3 Engines, with 4,500 horsepower total.

“Vigor will put its considerable experience to work building these new tugboats,” Vigor Industrial sales manager Bryan Nichols said. “These new builds are evidence of how we are inspiring confidence in our customers and growing our shipbuilding business.”