The Maritime Administration (MarAd) has selected three Crowley-managed tankers to participate in its Tanker Security Program.
The three medium-range (MR) tankers – Stena Immaculate, Stena Imperative and Stena Impeccable – will sail as part of a joint venture between Crowley and Stena Bulk USA. The trio are Stena IMOIIMAX vessels; two were built in 2017 and the other in 2016.
IMOIIMAX vessels are designed to carry IMO 2 and 3 cargoes as well as clean and dirty products. The vessels are all equipped with eighteen cargo tanks of max 3,000 m³ capacity as well as a nitrogen-based inert gas system.
The three ships are in the process of being reflagged as U.S. registered vessels with U.S. crews and will continue international commercial operations but can be chartered “on a short-term basis to serve the U.S. government’s operations,” according to MarAd.
“Crowley appreciates the U.S. government and military’s continued trust in our capabilities to serve the nation’s needs. Crowley’s team with Stena Bulk offers government customers a deep, full suite of capabilities to maintain an efficient, dependable supply chain with management that adds value by being able to meet needs quickly and innovatively,” said Gavin Hughes, vice president, Crowley Government Solutions, the Florida-based company’s business unit for government services.
Crowley won a Military Sealift Command charter contract in 2022 to run the Stena Polaris, an Ice Class tanker serving bulk fuel needs of the U.S. Department of Defense in the Arctic and Antarctic regions, as well as transporting fuel to U.S military facilities in the Mediterranean region.
The MarAd TSP program “will ensure that a core fleet of U.S.-based product tankers can operate competitively in international trade and enhance U.S. supply chain resiliency for liquid fuel products,” the agency said, adding that “the TSP will provide the Department of Defense with assured access to ten U.S.-registered product tank vessels that may be used to supply the armed forces with fuel during times of armed conflict or national emergency.”
In April, three Overseas Shipholding Group MR tankers – Overseas Santorini, Overseas Mykonos, and Overseas Sun Coast – were selected for the TSP program.
According to the terms of the TSP, tanker operators selected for the program receive an annual stipend of $6 million from the U.S. government for each participating vessel. •