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Foss Awards Trinity Marine Contract For Two $11 Million, Voith-Schneider Propelled Tractor Tugs

Foss Maritime Co. of Seattle, Wash., awarded a contract to Trinity Marine Group of Gulfport, Miss., for construction of two enhanced tractor tugs that will escort and assist oil tankers in northern Puget Sound. Each vessel will reportedly cost $11 million.

Designed to measure 155-feetwith a beam of 46 feet and a 20-foot operating draft, the 7,600-hp vessels will reportedly be the world's largest, most powerful tugs fitted with Voith- Schneider cycloidal propulsion units. Main engines on the tugs are EMD ME16-710G 7A diesels.

The German-design circular propulsion system consists of two sets of five vertically oriented blades installed ahead of the tug's center.

This design gives the tug 360-degree maneuverability and an unparalleled ability to steer and stop tankers in the event of an emergency. Foss' first tug is due to enter service at the end of November 1993.

ARCO Marine Inc. will have preferential use of this tug under a contract signed last August by ARCO and Foss.

The second tug is due to be delivered in February 1994. Under a contract signed in October, BP Oil Shipping Co., U.S.A., will have preferential use of this tug. Foss' existing North Sound tractors, the Andrew Foss and Arthur Foss, will remain in service after the new vessels arrive.

The hulls of the two vessels are scheduled to be fabricated in Trinity's Halter Marine shipyard in Lockport, La. The two Voith- Schneider propulsion units, the propulsion- protecting grounding plate and the aft skeg will not be installed on each vessel until the hulls are drydocked at Trinity's Equitable Equipment shipyard in New Orleans. The deckhouses will also be fabricated and installed at Equitable. The Voith-Schneider propulsion units for both vessels have already been ordered from the German factory, and the first shipment is due to arrive in New Orleans by the first of August Design work for the two new tugs was performed primarily in house by the Foss Design Team. The Glosten Associates Inc., a Seattlebased naval architecture firm, provided a contract design and prepared plans and specifications.

The enhanced tractor tugs will have a primary mission of tanker escorting and assisting, but will also be responsible for marine firefighting, offshore salvage and emergency assistance towing. Each vessel will be equipped with two 6,600-gpm monitors and 6,000 gallons of storage for firefighting foam, representing the first time a significant marine firefighting capability will be available in northern Puget Sound.

The yet-to-be-named tugs will perform sea trials in the Gulf of Mexico before Foss takes delivery. For additional information on the building capabilities of Trinity Marine Group.

 
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