Vessel Management Services, Inc., a Crowley Maritime Corporation subsidiary and part of its corporate services segment, will christen its newest Articulated Tug-Barge (ATB) tank vessel this Friday in Sturgeon Bay, Wis. The ATB, comprised of the 9,280 HP-tug Ocean Reliance and 155,000-barrel barge 550-3, is the third of four
such vessels the company will take delivery of this year. The ceremony will be held at the Bay Shipbuilding Company at 11 a.m. Molly Crowley, who serves as a director on Crowley's board, will
christen the Ocean Reliance.
Intrepid Ship Management, a subsidiary of Marine Transport Lines, will charter the Manitowoc Marine-built ATB from Vessel Management Services
and operate it. Marine Transport is a Crowley subsidiary and part of its oil and chemical distribution and transportation segment.
"We are looking forward to placing this new ATB into service with our other ATBs completed earlier this year," said Tom Crowley Jr., Chairman, President and CEO of Crowley Maritime. Already in service are the Sea Reliance and barge 550-1, and the Sound Reliance and barge 550-2.
"We have one more ATB to go in this particular new-build program," he said. "The Coastal Reliance and barge 550-4 are scheduled for completion by Manitowoc in December."
"These vessels are state-of-the art and will provide many years of safe operation for our customers," Crowley said. "The vessel designs have
been put through rigorous testing and have proven that they can withstand stress under dynamic conditions."
An ATB has an articulated, or hinged, connection system between the tug and barge, which allows movement in one axis, or plane in the critical
area of fore and aft pitch. The ATB tank vessel was jointly designed by Vessel Management Services and the Manitowoc Marine Group to incorporate the latest advances in environmental and safety while addressing increased
efficiencies in hose handling, anchoring, mooring, discharge and loading of
"Building the Ocean Reliance tug/barge was an excellent opportunity
for two long-standing companies who are deeply committed to the maritime
industry to work together on a high-profile project," said Terry D.
Growcock, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Manitowoc Company,
Inc. "It also afforded us the opportunity to showcase our multi-yard
shipbuilding expertise by building the barge in Sturgeon Bay and the tug in
Marinette. Being able to leverage the strengths of our workforce and
facilities has resulted in an innovative vessel that will complement the
reputation and heritage of the Crowley fleet
for many years to come."
The 550-3 is double hulled and the tug is double sided for maximum
environmental protection and safety. The barge, built, documented and
maintained to the requirements of American Bureau of Shipping (ABS)
SafeHull, has an inert gas system as well as an enhanced cargo system and a
fully redundant ballast system.
The Ocean Reliance meets all SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) and ABS
criteria, and has a foam capable fire monitor; twin fuel efficient, reduced
emission electronic diesel engines; a noise reduction package and other
upgrades to increase crew comfort. And the communication and navigation
equipment is among the most technologically advanced in the industry today.