Vigor Fab, the fabrication and newbuild arm of Vigor Industrial, has been awarded a contract by Tidewater Barge Lines of Vancouver, Washington, to construct three new tugboats.
Construction of the first tug kicks off today, with the keel laying (the formal recognition of the start of a ship’s construction) at Vigor’s facility in Portland.
While Tidewater has rebuilt and repowered several of the vessels in its fleet, these tugs will be the first newly built vessels for the company in nearly 30 years. Delivery of the first tug will be in December 2014, with the 2nd and 3rd to follow in 2015.
“Tidewater has provided top-notch tug and barge service for more than 80 years,” said Bryan Nichols, sales manager of Vigor Industrial. “We’re honored they chose us to help make this critical investment in their future.”
Vigor’s 60-acre yard, oversized 800 foot build way and extensive fabrication bays provide the capacity and flexibility for new builds of all types, with new construction projects ranging from barges and ferries (the company is currently building two 144-car ferries for Washington State Ferries) to fishing vessels and now tugs.
“Vigor will put its considerable experience to work building these new tugboats to the highest standards. These new builds are evidence of how we are inspiring confidence in our customers and growing our shipbuilding business,” added Nichols.
“Vigor is a great fit for this project. The company has proven itself as a competitive shipbuilder with the capacity we need and the quality we demand. We are eager to start our new build program and be able to put these tugs to work for our customers,” said Bob Curcio, President & CEO at Tidewater.
Designed by CT Marine, of Edgecomb, Maine, these state-of-the-art vessels were specially designed to service the Columbia River market. The tug engines are EPA Tier III compliant and provide upgraded environmental standards for cleaner emissions and a lower environmental impact. The tug design also features ergonomic accommodations and comforts proven to minimize fatigue and reduce injuries amongst crew.
“These tugs are a welcome addition to the growing Tidewater fleet,” added Curcio. “We are excited to make the investments necessary to address the needs of our customers for best-in-class, modern and environmentally friendly equipment. The investments we are making will serve the needs of our customers for many years to come.”
Engines: Two Caterpillar 3516 Tier 3 Engines, 4500 HP Total