Heavy Lifting: New Tugs Transported for Launch
Heavy transport specialist Mammoet was recently called in to transport of two 430-ton tugboats from the Island Tug and Barge (ITB) Annacis Island facility to Vancouver Harbor.
The Island Raider and Island Regent, which each measure 23.9 meters long and 12.5 meters wide, needed to be moved to Vancouver Harbor for berthing, but the ITB facility has no clear access to the water.
Initial scoping of the transport route identified numerous obstacles, including a below grade railroad siding and three sets of railway tracks between the yard and the steep bank of the river, overhead powerlines, railway restrictions and constraining tidal conditions.
Mammoet’s engineering team developed a solution to transport the tugs across the rail lines while maintaining adequate clearance to the powerlines. The tugs were placed on Mammoet’s Self-Propelled Modular Transporters (SPMTs) to provide precision movement within the facility’s congested footprint. A ramp arrangement was placed over the rail lines. Once these were cleared, 40 foot ramps were connected to a self-ballasting barge where a delicate Roll On operation occurred within a six hour time limit to load the two tugs.
The project saw Mammoet work with several subcontractors and the client Tidewater to devise a logistics plan to overcome the challenges and safely load out and launch the two vessels.
The tugs were loaded within the timeframe and transported to the Vancouver Harbor where they were hoisted off the barge and placed into the harbor for transportation to Tidewaters Shipyard for completion.
Marc Schwartz, Tidewater Maintenance and Engineering Manager, said that teamwork, preparation and a dedication to safety made the project a success. “This was a logistically intricate and technically challenging project,” he said. “We put together a great team, overcame a lot of obstacles and safely launched the two vessels.”