Shipbuilding News, June 2013

New dry dock to boost VT Halter’s ship-repair business

VT Halter Marine Inc. announced on May 16 the arrival of a 12,000 metric ton floating dry dock transported by a heavy lift vessel from the Philippines. The dock dimensions are 546 feet by 128.5 feet by 46 feet. The dry dock is part of an overall expansion plan to the south yard in Pascagoula, Miss., where the company is adding a repair facility for semi-submersible drilling rigs and Panamax-size ships.

The addition of the floating dry dock to VT Halter Marine brings the company into the ship repair business and will start a new stream of revenue to its existing new-build business. It will benefit U.S. Gulf Coast ship repair capability, as it will be the newest addition to any existing facility in the region. VT Halter Marine will now be able to service not only the repair needs of its existing new-build customers, it will also cater to new customers and probably more than double its customer base for ship repair business.

VT Halter Marine expects to create as many as 400 new jobs with the development of this new facility. Plans for the expansion include machine shops, electrical shops and the newly delivered dry dock.

Maine Port Authority selects McAllister Towing for ATB

Buckley McAllister, president of McAllister Towing & Transportation, announced in late May that the Maine Port Authority has selected McAllister as its partner for the design of a containerized articulated tug barge (ATB) for the New England Marine Highway Project. Prior to the award, McAllister participated in a competitive bid process, which began Dec. 4, 2012. This competition followed the award of $150,000 in design funding to the Maine Port Authority on Sept. 25, 2012, as part of a cooperative agreement between the Maine Port Authority and the Maritime Administration (MarAd) under the auspices of the Marine Highway Program.

The Maine Port Authority and McAllister will be spending the next few months working with their team to design the containerized ATB based on criteria such as shipper and itinerary requirements, cost, speed and capacity. The determining factor throughout this process, however, will be market demand and the requirements of the trade.
The Maine Port Authority is firmly in line with this approach. John Henshaw, executive director of the Port Authority recently stated: “We always work with our shippers first. With port infrastructure design, equipment investment, terminal layout — and in this case vessel design — we always begin with the customer. We have been working with Maine shippers on this project for three years and we have more work to do. It takes time to integrate with a shipper’s supply chain and to create value utilizing any mode of transportation. The containerized ATB adds another opportunity for more competitive supply chain optimization.”

The design of the containerized ATB is expected in the near future as the two parties work with the various stakeholders, shippers and operational partners to assess the needs of the service and elements of the design. Both McAllister and the Maine Port Authority remain confident that taking time on the front end of this project will pay dividends in ensuring the service remains viable once started.

The initial design phase is expected to complete over the summer months and will culminate with the submission of a design to MarAd on Sept. 25.

TY Offshore Launches FMT 3256, eighth of 18 barges for FMT Industries

TY Offshore LLC is pleased to announced in late May the launch of FMT 3256, the eighth of 18 297.5-foot by 54-foot by 1- foot, 30,000-barrel tank barges for FMT Industries LLC, one of the several companies within the Florida Marine Group. FMT Industries has recently exercised its option for four additional barges from its original order of 10. The barges are being built at TY Offshore’s Gulfport, Miss., facility. Additional barge launches will follow at 30-day intervals.

Bollinger receives ‘Award for Excellence in Safety’

Bollinger Shipyards Inc. was awarded the 2012 “Award for Excellence in Safety” by the Shipbuilders Council of America (SCA) for the eighth consecutive year.

On April 11, the SCA presented the “Award for Excellence in Safety” to Bollinger during the association’s Spring General Membership Meeting in Washington. The Award for Excellence in Safety is given to member companies with the lowest total recordable incident rates (TRIR) based on a quarterly injury and illness survey conducted by the association.
On winning the award, Bollinger’s chief executive, Donald “Boysie” Bollinger, said: “For the eighth year in a row, Bollinger is recognized for exceptional achievements and commitment to worker safety in the shipbuilding and repair industry. Thanks to the sustained efforts of our employees, Bollinger continues to be one of the safest shipyards in America.”

The SCA is the national trade association representing the U.S. shipyard industry.

Fednav increases its Great Lakes fleet

Fednav Ltd., the largest international maritime bulk carrier in Canada, announced the addition of six new vessels to its fleet. Ordered with Sumitomo Corp. and Oshima Shipyard, the environmentally advanced vessels will be built in Japan and will add substantial capacity to its Great Lakes-capable fleet of ships.

A new generation of lakers, the 34,000-ton bulk carriers are adapted to the dimensions of the St. Lawrence Seaway and are specially equipped for navigating in ice. The vessels will be built with “box” holds, better suited to a variety of general cargo like steel and project cargo. Their design will streamline operations, minimizing time and effort to reduce cargo residues and will result in more efficient port calls.

“This investment highlights Fednav’s commitment to the Great Lakes, and to our customers and partners in the industrial heart of North America,” explained Paul Pathy, Fednav president and co-chief executive, upon signing of the contract. “The Great Lakes St. Lawrence System is a very valuable part of the two countries’ economies. This order by Fednav demonstrates our clear goal to remain the leader in international Great Lakes shipping.”

The vessels will share the environmental characteristics of the previous six lakers ordered at the Oshima shipyard. They will consume 28 percent less fuel and produce 28 percent less emissions than vessels built by Oshima Shipyard for Fednav 10 years ago, ships already among the most efficient of their time. This will contribute significantly to Fednav’s objectives of reducing GHG emissions in its fleet on a continuous basis. The fuel-efficient engines will also reduce nitrogen oxide emissions by approximately 33 percent. All of the vessels will receive the Clean-Design notation from the Det Norske Veritas classification society.  

The six additional vessels will be delivered between May and November 2015, as part of a series of 27 new ships, of which 14 are lakers, added to Fednav’s fleet since Jan. 1, 2012.  

By Professional Mariner Staff