Towing Safety Advisory Committee News

24 Feb 2020

Insights: Jennifer Carpenter, AWO President & CEO

Jennifer Carpenter (Photo: AWO)

Jennifer A. Carpenter serves as President & CEO of The American Waterways Operators (AWO), the national trade association representing the inland and coastal tugboat, towboat and barge industry. Carpenter joined AWO in August 1990 and became President & CEO in January 2020. Before assuming her current position, she worked her way up the hawsepipe from Government Affairs Assistant to Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, holding a series of progressively responsible positions including Manager-Regulatory Issues…

24 Oct 2019

Maritime Risk Symposium, Nov. 12-15 at SUNY Maritime

© Oleksii Fadieiev/Adobe Stock

The State University of New York Maritime College, in collaboration with the U.S. Coast Guard, National Academy of Sciences, academic institutions, industry partners, and federal, state and local agencies, will host the 10th Annual Maritime Risk Symposium (MRS 2019) Nov. 13-15, 2019, at New York Maritime College located in the Bronx, New York.MRS 2019 will bring together academics, government and commercial entities to discuss the threats, challenges and risks associated with the Marine Transportation System with a focus on current and future marine transportation challenges and threats.

10 May 2019

Summary of latest TSAC Meeting Available

Rear Adm. John Nadeau, assistant commandant for prevention policy.

The Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC) held its spring public meeting in Miami, Florida, March 13, 2019. Attendees represented the Coast Guard, the towing and barge industry, engineers, pilots/masters, port authorities, terminal operators, offshore operators, and the public.After welcoming remarks from Rear Adm. John Nadeau, assistant commandant for prevention policy, the committee deliberated on current tasks, discussed new business, and received public comments.Highlights from the meeting included:Capt.

22 Mar 2018

Insights: Pat Folan, Tug & Barge Solutions

Pat Folan, Partner, Tug & Barge Solutions

Pat Folan, a partner at Tug & Barge Solutions, weighs in on all things tugboat â€“ with a focus on Subchapter M. Pat Folan is a partner in Daphne, Ala.-based Tug & Barge Solutions, a company that focuses on Subchapter M compliance for towing companies. The company also performs surveys of towing vessels and barges, manages safety management systems for towing companies and trains people on towing vessels and in offices. A professional mariner, he has operated towing vessels from Maine to Corpus Christi, Texas, including the Alabama Rivers, Lower Mississippi, Great Lakes and Erie Canal.

21 Jul 2017

A Significant Date for Subchapter M

© hildeanna / Adobe Stock

July 20 marks a milestone in Subchapter M implementation. Towing vessels with keels laid or major conversions on or after July 20, 2017 are required to meet 46 CFR Subchapter M and obtain a Certificate of Inspection (COI) prior to operating. Additionally, starting July 20, 2018, a portion of existing towing vessels will have one year to meet all of Subchapter M and obtain COIs. By July 19, 2022, 100 percent of the towing vessels must have valid COIs on board. Owners or managing…

20 Apr 2017

Pat Folan Weighs in on All Things 'Tugboat'

Photo: Pat Folan

Pat Folan is a partner in Daphne, Ala.-based Tug & Barge Solutions, a safety and compliance company that focuses on Subchapter M compliance for towing companies. The company also performs surveys of towing vessels and barges, manages safety management systems for towing companies and trains people on towing vessels and in offices. A professional mariner, for 27 years, he also operated towing vessels from Maine to Corpus Christi, Texas, including the Alabama Rivers, Lower Mississippi, Great Lakes and Erie Canal. A graduate of St.

20 Jun 2016

New Subchapter M Towing Vessel Regulations Take Effect

(File photo: Eastern Shipbuilding Group)

The U.S. Coast Guard announced Monday new towing vessel regulations establishing new requirements for the design, construction, onboard equipment and operation of towing vessels. These regulations, which were developed over time with input from the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC) and the towing vessel industry, will be incorporated into Title 46 of the Code of Federal Regulations as the new Subchapter M. The Maritime Transportation Act of 2004 reclassified towing vessels…

01 Oct 2015

SubM Debut Now Set for February 2016

ABS and ABS Group are conducting seminars for industry stakeholders seeking to learn more about Subchapter M and compliance options. Pictured here are attendees and speakers at a recent event in Paducah, KY.

The perennial “Year of Subchapter M” has been kicked forward again, this time to February 2016. That means that the clock is now ticking loudly for those towing operations that have yet to climb onboard the safety train. Quality operators see standardized safety practices as a way of leveling the playing field, integral to maintaining the health and profitability of their fleets, and key to winning business from quality customers. Subchapter M will be a phased-in over a period of years. It’s not as much time as you think.

25 Aug 2015

AWO Working Hard for the Domestic Workboat Market

Higman Barges by Capt. Darren Istre

The year 2015 has been a busy year for The American Waterways Operators, the national trade association for the tugboat, towboat and barge industry, and for the industry AWO is privileged to represent. It’s a dynamic time for a vital industry that constitutes the largest segment of the U.S. domestic fleet, as companies throughout the industry are investing heavily to meet evolving customer needs; the industry stands on the verge of historic regulatory change; and AWO pursues an active public policy agenda to support members’ needs for predictable and practicable government policy.

08 Apr 2015

2015: An Action Year for Subchapter M

Jennifer Carpenter

For all of the predictions and prognostications that have been made over the last ten years, one thing is objectively true: the publication of Subchapter M – the U.S. Coast Guard’s long-awaited towing vessel inspection rule – is closer than it’s ever been. Yes, the road to Subchapter M has been long, but the end is in sight (really). As we approach our destination, both the Coast Guard and the tugboat, towboat, and barge industry have work to do to ensure that the way is well paved.

12 Jan 2015

US Ferries Are Safer, but Regulatory Burdens Grow

In recent years, ferries have been in the spotlight, in part because of growing mass transit needs and increased road congestion, but also because of concerns about the deadly South Korean ferry sinking last April. We asked Captain Terri Bernstein, the Passenger Vessel Association’s 2014 President, about the industry’s status in the United States. Based in Alexandria, VA, the PVA has over 500 member companies. Ferries are safer, especially since 9/11, but regulatory requirements have swelled and can be onerous, Bernstein said. She’s the owner of BB Riverboats, Inc.

25 Nov 2014

The Legal Consequences of 46 CFR Subchapter “M”

Daniel J. Fitzgerald

As the holiday season and the end of another year quickly approaches, the towing industry patiently waits for the Coast Guard to finalize the long-awaited towing vessel inspection rule. More than 10 years ago, Congress passed the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004, requiring more stringent regulation of uninspected towing vessels (UTVs). Since that time, the Coast Guard and several industry groups (including the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC), American…

10 Oct 2014

Reducing Human Error & Near Miss Incidents

We recently came across a very interesting report issued to Congress by the United States Coast Guard. The May 2012 study might seem dated, but that’s hardly the case. Actually, it’s a telling description of what can go wrong, why and perhaps, a blueprint for how to go forward and fix things. That’s our take, in any event. The Report chronicles oil spills from all vessel types, including the towing industry, tank ships, the offshore industry, freighters, and fishing vessels. Section…

15 Oct 2013

It's Time for a Towing Vessel Inspection Rule

Last month, I had the opportunity to testify before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation at a hearing that examined maritime regulations. In what must have been a change of pace for Subcommittee members, instead of detailing the regulatory burdens facing the tugboat, towboat and barge industry, I urged them to exercise their oversight responsibility to ensure expeditious publication of long-awaited U.S. Coast Guard regulations regarding towing vessel inspection.

19 Aug 2013

Coast Guard Foundation to Honor Kirby’s Joseph Pyne

Joseph Pyne

The Coast Guard Foundation, a nonprofit organization committed to the education and welfare of Coast Guard members and their families, announced that its 33rd annual Salute to the United States Coast Guard will take place on Thursday, October 10, 2013 in New York City. This year’s event will honor the bravery and heroism of U.S. Coast Guard members across the country and pay special tribute to Joseph Pyne of Kirby Corporation for his strong support of the Foundation, and its programs and projects that benefit the Coast Guard and its service members.

16 May 2013

By the Numbers: Subchapter M Statistics

The Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004 (Aug. 9, 2004), established new authorities for towing vessels. Out of that came a proposed regulatory scheme requiring towing vessels to become inspected vessels and obtain a Certificate of Inspection (COI). The proposed Subchapter M for title 46, U.S.C., covering Certification, Vessel Compliance, Towing Safety Management System (TSMS), Third-Party Organizations, Operations, Life-Saving, Fire Protection, Machinery and Electrical Systems and Equipment, and Construction and Management of towing vessels is now in draft form. Looking ahead, the Coast Guard refuses to speculate about rulemaking timelines but the Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy, Rear Admiral Joseph A.

08 Apr 2013

USCG Accepting Applications for TSAC Vacancies

The United States Coast Guard is requesting applications from qualified candidates seeking consideration for appointment as public members to the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC). TSAC advises the Coast Guard on matters relating to shallow-draft inland and coastal waterway navigation and towing safety. Applications for TSAC membership must include a cover letter and resume. By mail: Alternate Designated Federal Official (ADFO)of TSAC, Commandant, (CG-OES-2)/TSAC U.S. Coast Guard, 2100 Second St. By e-mail to William.J.Abernathy@uscg.mil.

27 Sep 2012

TSMS Transition Program Debuts at SUNY Towing Forum

Baker, Lyman & Co. will offer UTV operators a unique opportunity to review the TSMS Transition Program though an hour long interactive presentation during the October 17, 2012 Towing Forum at SUNY Maritime. TSMS, or Towing Safety Management System, is the result of the long awaited Sub-Chapter M Rules by which towing vessels become subject to USCG safety management inspection. The TSMS Transition Program allows Sub-Chapter M impacted operators to enroll into a regulatorily certified Towing Safety Management System prior to the Sub-Chapter M Final Rule.

29 May 2012

Coast Guard Looks to Fill TSAC Vacancies

Towing Safety Advisory Committee; Vacancies / Coast Guard, DHS Requests TSAC Applications. SUMMARY: The Coast Guard seeks applications for membership on the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC). This Committee advises the Secretary of Homeland Security on matters relating to shallow-draft inland and coastal waterway navigation and towing safety. DATES: Applicants should submit a cover letter and resume in time to reach Patrick Mannion, the Alternate Designated Federal Officer (ADFO) on or before July 13, 2012. • E-mail: Patrick.J.Mannion@uscg.mil. • Fax: (202) 372–1926 ATTN: Mr.

11 Aug 2011

Coast Guard Publishes NPRM

The U.S. Coast Guard announced Thursday publication in the Federal Register of a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) designed to improve safety on towing vessels. The NPRM provides a layered approach to towing vessel safety that includes the option of an audited safety management system or an annual Coast Guard inspection regime. The NPRM also includes procedures for obtaining Certificates of Inspection issued by the Coast Guard, and for Coast Guard oversight of any audit and survey processes involving third party organizations. Additionally, it would establish safety regulations governing the inspection, standards, and safety management systems for towing vessels.

11 Aug 2011

USCG Publishes NPRM for Inspection of Towing Vessels

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Coast Guard announced Thursday publication in the Federal Register of a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) designed to improve safety on towing vessels. The NPRM provides a layered approach to towing vessel safety that includes the option of an audited safety management system or an annual Coast Guard inspection regime. The NPRM also includes procedures for obtaining Certificates of Inspection issued by the Coast Guard, and for Coast Guard oversight of any audit and survey processes involving third party organizations. Additionally, it would establish safety regulations governing the inspection, standards, and safety management systems for towing vessels.

21 Jan 2011

Members Sought for Towing Safety Advisory Committee

The U.S. Coast Guard seeks applications for membership on the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC). Applications should be submitted by March 7. 76 Fed. Reg. 3647 (January 20, 2011). (Source: Bryant’s Maritime News)

22 Apr 2010

Towing Safety Committee Members Sought

The US Coast Guard is soliciting applications for membership on the Towing Safety Advisory Committee (TSAC). Applications should be received by May 21. 75 Fed. Reg. 20856 (April 21, 2010). (Source: Bryant’s Maritime News)

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