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Towing Vessel

New Subchapter M Towing Vessel Regulations Take Effect

(File photo: Eastern Shipbuilding Group)

The U.S. Coast Guard announced Monday new towing vessel regulations establishing new requirements for the design, construction, onboard equipment and operation of towing vessels.   These regulations, which were developed over time with input from the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC) and the towing vessel industry, will be incorporated into Title 46 of the Code of Federal Regulations as the new Subchapter M.   The Maritime Transportation Act of 2004 reclassified towing vessels as vessels subject to inspection and authorized the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security to establish requirements for a safety management system appropriate for the characteristics, methods of operation and the unique nature of towing vessels. These requirements make up Subchapter M.   These regulations become effective July 20, 2016. As provided in these regulations, certain regulations are phased-in over time and existing towing vessels will have an additional two years before having to comply with most of the requirements. With certain exceptions, these regulations apply to U.S.-flag towing vessels 26 feet or more in length and those less than 26 feet moving barges carrying oil or hazardous material in bulk. The rule lays out new compliance options as well as new equipment, construction and operational requirements for towing vessels.  


NTSB Releases Finding of I-40 Accident Investigation

The nation’s tugboat, towboat, and barge industry is committed to improving public safety and preventing accidents involving vessels and bridges, the American Waterways Operators (AWO) pledged as the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released the results of its investigation of the May 2002 I-40 bridge accident at Webbers Falls, Oklahoma. AWO President Thomas A. Allegretti called the NTSB findings “important information that will help our industry and make the traveling public


AWO Pledges Support in I-40 Investigation

The American Waterways Operators (AWO) pledged as the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released the results of its investigation of the May 2002 I-40 bridge accident at Webbers Falls, Oklahoma. AWO President Thomas A. Allegretti called the NTSB findings "important information that will help our industry and make the traveling public safer. AWO is a partner with the NTSB and the Coast Guard in improving marine transportation safety


Towing Safety Committee to Meet

TSAC – meeting Two working groups of the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC), sponsored by the U.S. Coast Guard, will meet in Arlington, Virginia to discuss issues related to towing vessel safety. The Regulatory Review Working Group will meet on April 27 to discuss travel time for towing vessel officers. The Maritime Security Working Group will meet on April 28 to discuss implementation of security plan regulations and development of timely feedback to the Coast Guard. 69 Fed


Towing Vessel License Changes

The U.S. Coast Guard issued a reminder to U.S. mariners that the "grandfather" clause allowing persons who began service or training in the towing industry before May 21, 2001 to receive a license as master of towing vessels under the old requirements will expire on May 20, 2004. Since the license must actually be issued no later than that date, applications should be submitted well in advance. Persons potentially affected by this issue should contact their local USCG Regional Examination


By the Numbers: Subchapter M Statistics

The Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004 (Aug. 9, 2004), established new authorities for towing vessels. Out of that came a proposed regulatory scheme requiring towing vessels to become inspected vessels and obtain a Certificate of Inspection (COI). The proposed Subchapter M for title 46, U.S.C., covering Certification, Vessel Compliance, Towing Safety Management System (TSMS), Third-Party Organizations, Operations, Life-Saving, Fire Protection


Proposed Ruling Calls For Fixed Fire Safety

The U.S. Coast Guard's supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM) on "Fire Suppression Systems and Voyage Planning for Towing Vessels" appears in today's Federal Register. The SNPRM proposes the installation of fixed fire-extinguishing systems in the engine rooms of towing vessels, and it states that owners or operators, and masters, ensure that voyage planning is conducted before vessels towing barges commence on trips or voyages of at least 12 hours


Licensing and Manning of Officers on U.S. Towing Vessels

The U.S. Coast Guard has made permanent, with a few minor changes, its previous interim rule regarding licensing requirements for officers on U.S. towing vessels and manning requirements for those vessels. The new provisions come into effect on September 15, 2003. 68 Fed. Reg. 3580 Source: HK Law


Inspection of Towing Vessels Meeting– Changed

The U.S. Coast Guard issued a Notice stating that its meeting on February 10 in New Orleans regarding inspection of U.S. towing vessels will be held in a different location in the city. All other details remain as before. 70 Fed. Reg. 5691 (HK LAW).


Implementation Issues Key to Effectiveness of Licensing Rule, AWO Tells USCG

Ensuring the smooth and effective implementation of new licensing requirements for towing vessel officers will be the most critical USCG-industry challenge as the November 2000 effective date approaches, AWO told the USCG. In its comments, AWO reiterated its support for the new approach to towing vessel officer licensing contained in the agency's November 1999 interim rule. "We believe the interim rule, with its emphasis on practical demonstration of operational proficiency


Safety and Preparation on the Brownwater Radar

File photo: Thomas Rollins

Weather Channel Forecasters are predicting a “near-average” hurricane season for 2016, but warn that an average season does not mean businesses and residents shouldn’t prepare for the worst. While it is unclear whether the season, which began June 1


Bay-Houston's New Escort Tug Launched

Laura B (Photo: Eastern Shipbuilding Group)

Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. has launched Laura B, the final vessel in a series of four Robert Allan, LTD. (RAL) designed Z-Tech 2400 Class terminal and escort tugs built for Bay-Houston Towing Co. The Laura B is scheduled to deliver in 2016.  


Eastern Delivers for Bay-Houston Towing

David B (Photo: Eastern Shipbuilding Group)

Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. has delivered the escort tug David B for Bay-Houston Towing Co. on June 15, 2016.   David B (ESG Hull #239) is the third in a series of four Robert Allan, LTD. (RAL) designed Z-Tech 2400 Class terminal and escort tugs currently under construction at


Diesel Spill Forces Closure on the Mississippi

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers closed Lock and Dam 25 due to diesel in the water on the upper Mississippi River near St. Louis, Missouri, Wednesday.   An estimated 2,074 gallons of diesel was reportedly released by the towing vessel Jerry Jarrett while transiting the lock and dam


AWO Authorizes ClassNK to Perform RCP Audits

Pictured left to right: Ed McCain - Manager, Client Relations, ClassNK America; Toru Urushihara, Manager - ClassNK; Tom Allegretti - President & CEO, AWO; Jennifer Carpenter - Executive Vice President & COO, AWO; John Kim - General Manager, ClassNK (Photo: American Waterways Operators)

The American Waterways Operators (AWO) and ClassNK have signed an agreement under which ClassNK will be authorized to conduct audits of AWO's Responsible Carrier Program, a safety management system for towing vessels with which all AWO members must comply as a condition of association membership


Demand for Helm CONNECT Software Soars ahead of Subchapter M

Subchapter M can impacts your business Courtesy Helm CONNECT.

Helm Operations  signed on more than 50 commercial maritime companies to its  maritime software, Helm CONNECT, many of whom are trying to prepare for the publication of Subchapter M.   Helm CONNECT’s customers come from a variety of commercial maritime industries


New ATB Brings High Maneuverability to Jones Act Fleet

Photo: BAE Systems

The Dutch company Van der Velden Marine Systems (VDVMS) in conjunction with the U.S. representative Ships Machinery International, Inc. (SMI) has announced the launching of a new Jones Act Articulated Tug Barge (ATB) with BARKE high-lift flap rudders for coastwise service in the U.S


Eastern Delivers Escort Tug to Bay-Houston Towing

ZYANA K (Photo: ESG)

Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. announced the delivery of the Escort Tug ZYANA K for Bay-Houston Towing Co. on May 5, 2016. This series of Robert Allan, LTD. (RAL) designed Z-Tech 2400 Class Terminal & Escort Tugs is currently under construction at Eastern’s Nelson Street facility


Towing Vessel Inspection Bureau Elects New Leaders

File photo: WCI

Towing Vessel Inspection Bureau Holds Annual Membership Meeting; Elects New Leadership and Votes to Proceed with a Third Party Organization Application to the Coast Guard   Members of the Towing Vessel Inspection Bureau (TVIB), the recognized professional trade organization of marine


Tug Launched for Suderman & Young at Eastern

Photo: Eastern Shipbuilding Group

Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. launched the Escort Tug OCEANUS for Suderman & Young Towing Company on April 26, 2016. This series of Robert Allan, LTD. (RAL) designed Z-Tech 2400 Class Terminal & Escort Tugs is currently under construction at Eastern’s Nelson Street facility


OMB - Subchapter M Cleared for Publication

File Image: an aerial view of a typical fleeting operation on Americas inland rivers (WCI)

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) completed its review of the draft final rule entitled Inspection of Towing Vessels, also known as "Subchapter M." The document has been returned to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the US Coast Guard for final preparation prior to


Eastern Cranking Out Escort Tugs

Neptune (Photo: Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc.)

Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. delivers the escort tug Neptune to Suderman & Young Towing Company and launches the Escort Tug David B to Bay-Houston Towing Co.   Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. has delivered the escort tug Neptune (Hull# 237) on March 28, 2016


Quote of the Day: Subchapter M

 Jennifer A. Carpenter, Executive Vice President & COO,  American Waterways Operators (Photo: AWO)

 As the American Waterways Operators (AWO) convenes itsSpring Convention & Annual Membership Meeting today through Thursday in Washington, D.C., at The Mandarin Oriental Hotel, today's "Quote of the Day" comes from AWO's Jennifer Carpenter


Response to Barge Breakaway on the Mississippi Ongoing

The U.S. Coast Guard siad it is continuing its response to an allision resulting in a barge breakaway on the Mississippi River near Thebes, Ill., Wednesday.   An Incident Command Post has been established at Marine Safety Unit Paducah. Lt. Cmdr. Heather Stratton is the Incident Commander.


Barge Breakaway on the Mississippi River

The U.S. Coast Guard said it is responding to an allision and barge breakaway on the Mississippi River at mile marker 43.7 near Thebes, Ill., Wednesday.   Tow vessel Michael G. Morris allided with the Thebes Railroad Bridge at mile marker 43






 
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