The Houston Pilots Association christened
the pilot boat M/V Bayou City at the Port of Houston Authority
's Sam Houston Pavilion last month. "The addition of the M/V Bayou City to our fleet will greatly enhance our organization's total commitment to safety on the Houston Ship Channel
and excellence in service to the maritime shipping industry," said Capt. Mike Morris, presiding officer of the pilots.
The $6 million M/V Bayou City vessel measures 72 ft. in length with a breadth of 43 feet. It has a depth of 16 ft., a draft ranging from 10 to 12 ft., and can travel at a top speed of 21 knots. It is equipped with two 4,000-hp Caterpillar Series 3412 engines that have a fuel capacity of 7,500 gallons.
The M/V Bayou City will be the fourth working vessel in the Houston pilots' fleet. The pilots' three other boats include the M/V Houston (62.2 ft. long), M/V Lone Star (50 ft. long) and Houston Pilot No. 1
(54 ft. long).
The Houston Ship Channel is being deepened and widened, and that project will push the pilot boarding
point four miles further off shore. This project is expected to be completed in January 2005.