Nichols Brothers Boat Builders wins contract for Foss tugs


The following is text of a news release from Nichols Brothers Boat Builders:

(FREELAND, Wash.) — Foss Maritime of Seattle has entered into contract with Nichols Brothers Boat Builders (NBBB) of Freeland, Wash., for the construction of four new 90-ton bollard pull tractor tugs with an option for six additional tugs to follow. This contract marks the first between Foss Maritime and Nichols Brothers Boat Builders.

Foss has selected a design by Jensen Maritime Consultants of Seattle. The 100’ x 40’ Z-Drive tractor tugs will be built to United States Coast Guard Subchapter “M” regulatory standards, with ABS loadline certification, and UWILD notation. The vessels will be equipped with two MTU series 4000 main engines and meeting Tier 4 emission standards, Rolls-Royce US255 azimuth thrusters and Markey winches.

Foss plans for the vessels to operate on the West Coast of the United States, performing ship-handling duties within ports and harbors. The vessels will be equipped with condition-based monitoring for the Z- drives and main engines.

The first four vessels will be delivered beginning winter 2020 through winter 2021. NBBB will implement a new production line to improve efficiencies to meet the accelerated four-boat order.

“Nichols Brothers Boat Builders is excited that Foss Maritime has chosen our shipyard to build their new tugs in this important program,” said Tor Hovig, NBBB Vice President of Sales and Customer Relations. “This is the first contract we have had with Foss, and it allows us the opportunity to work with one of the most respected players in the US tug and workboat industry.”

“With the series of vessels included in this program, we look forward to working with Foss for a long time ahead,” added Hovig.

NBBB has over 50 years’ experience in vessel construction, repair and conversion. NBBB has an extensive portfolio of tug construction which can be found amongst its company portfolio on the web at


By Professional Mariner Staff