Updating the Pusher Design
The medium sized pusher towboat is a stable of the U.S. Inland waterways marine transport. Built to work comfortably in the confines of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway they must also have enough power to handle the distances and currents of the Mississippi.
Recently some owners have built tugs to updated deigns. Kirby Marine has had a series of boats built at Raymond and Associates LLC shipyard in Bayou LaBatre Alabama. Florida Marine also had a series of new towboats built. These continue to be delivered from Eastern Shipbuilding. Ten of these have been or will be launched each with a pair of Cummins QSK38 main engines rated for 1300 hp (970 kw) continuous duty each at 1800 RPM.
The Kirbys 76 by 35-foot Jeff Montgomery, seen in the photograph, is powered by a pair of Tier 2 compliant Cummins K-38M engines delivering 850 hp each at 1800 RPM. Florida Marine’s Capt. Jerry Wiltz, delivered from Eastern Shipbuilding in mid-2008, is powered by a pair of Cummins Tier 2 compliant QSK38-M mains each delivering 1300 hp continuous.