Hess LNG, USCG Analyze Use of Smaller Tankers

Friday, April 07, 2006
Hess LNG has agreed to give the U.S. Coast Guard more information on its plan to use smaller than anticipated tankers to deliver liquefied natural gas to its proposed Taunton River import terminal. In mid-March, the Coast Guard sent Hess LNG a letter detailing its concerns and seeking more information about the company’s plan to maneuver tankers 725 feet long and 82 feet wide under two Brightman Street bridges; the old bridge has a 98-foot-wide opening for boats. Hess LNG said the company will provide the Coast Guard with additional information and analysis including simulated modeling, information about tugs that would help maneuver the tankers, design specifications of the vessels and contingency plans for a tanker that can’t pass the old Brightman Street Bridge because the drawbridge is stuck in the down position. The Coast Guard said it welcomes the new information. The project needs the Coast Guard’s recommendation for it to go forward. Hess LNG originally planned to use tankers 950 feet long and 145 feet across. Its revised plan combats a provision U.S. Rep. James P. McGovern, D-Mass. inserted in the federal transportation bill that prevents the demolition of the old Brightman Street bridge, under which the larger tankers can’t fit. The smaller tankers would make at least twice as many trips as the 50 to 70 the originals would have made and will have to stop in the 1,100-foot space between the Brightman Street bridges before moving laterally to navigate under the new bridge. (Source: Fall River Herald News)

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