Mobile, Ala. shipbuilder Blakeley BoatWorks is building a new EPA Tier 4 ship assist tugboat for fellow The Cooper Group company Crescent Towing. Upon completion, Crescent will operate the new tug in New Orleans as part of its Mississippi River ship assist fleet.
“The addition of this new 6,000-hp z-drive in support of our Mississippi River operations highlights our continued commitment to providing our customers with the most powerful and technologically advanced equipment in the industry,” said Scott H. Cooper, president of Crescent Towing.
The new vessel was designed by Crowley Engineering Services and will be 92 feet long, 38 feet wide and will draft 19 feet. The new tug design offers enhancements from the existing Crowley Engineering Services-designed tugs for Crescent, including additional horsepower that increases the vessel’s capability to meet demanding operational requirements. Advancing the high-performing fleet, the tug will feature twin Caterpillar 3516E Tier 4 engines, each producing 3,004 hp to power Kongsberg 255 fixed-pitch azimuthing drives (z-drives). The vessel will provide 80 tons of bollard pull.
Crowley Engineering Services said it is also providing the shipyard production package to improve efficiency of vessel construction and allow for more modern, modular and efficient construction.
“We are thrilled to continue to work alongside Crescent Towing and Blakeley BoatWorks, building on the success of our previous tugboat designs,” said Coulston Van Gundy, vice president of Crowley Engineering Services. “Through collaboration on the design and production engineering, we are able to integrate operator requirements into the vessel’s production process, providing a seamless construction process for the shipyard.”
This is the eighth Crescent Towing tug design provided by Crowley Engineering Services and the second to be built by Blakeley BoatWorks.
“Blakeley BoatWorks is honored to partner with Crescent Towing and Crowley Engineering Services to design and construct the second of a series of 6,000-hp tugboats,” said Swathin Kannalath, managing director of Blakeley BoatWorks. “The opportunity to construct one of the largest and most advanced tugboats operating on the Mississippi River creates a great amount of excitement for our entire team.”
“For over 81 years, our team of mariners and shore-based staff have worked relentlessly to provide the highest quality ship-assist towing service in the United States,” said Keith Kettenring, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Crescent Towing. “The addition of this new Tier 4 6,000-hp z-drive provides our team with another incredible tool to continue to offer the safest and most reliable towing services on the Mississippi River.”