A keel-laying ceremony was held on August 10 at Great Lakes Shipyard in Cleveland, Ohio for 10 Damen Stan Tugs 1907 ICE. The new Ice Class vessels will be the first tugs to be designed and built to comply with the new Subchapter M Coast Guard regulations, and will be operated by the shipyard’s affiliate company, The Great Lakes Towing Company, replacing existing tonnage.
Damen’s Houston-based manager for North America, Jan van Hogerwou
, confirmed that under the license, Great Lakes Shipyard will receive full construction, design and engineering support from Damen. “To achieve the best possible result,” he said, “Damen will also provide expert assistance based on its experience having constructed around two hundred Damen-designed vessels in the U.S. over the years.”
The 1907 tugs will be the first in the U.S. to be designed and built to comply with the U.S. Coast Guard Subchapter M regulations under ABS classification. These came into effect in June this year and set new standards of seaworthiness for the towage industry and also establish new rules for safety management, including protocols and inspection requirements.
The Stan Tugs 1907 were chosen based on Damen’s reputation for quality and fact-finding visits made by the management of The Great Lakes Towing Company to Damen in the Netherlands. In addition to the Ice Class specification, they will be treated with special, high endurance paint capable of withstanding the abrasion that comes with moving through ice. Stan Tugs 1907 can be found operating in locations around the world including Russia, Qatar and the Netherlands.
The partnership with Damen has provided Great Lakes Shipyard with a portfolio of proven vessel designs for customers in the U.S. Most of the designs have been refined to meet the needs of U.S. operators through a process of feedback and continuous development, and the new Stan Tug 1907 ICE design is a continuation of this.
While these are amongst the first tugs to be built in the U.S. under Damen’s Technical Cooperation program, more than 200 Damen vessels have been built under license in the U.S. since the mid-1990s. These include 80 26-meter patrol boats for the U.S. Coast Guard, built by Bollinger Shipyards; 55 Fast Crew Supplier 1204 class, built at Horizon Boat Builders and Trinity Shipyard; and 25 Fast Crew Supplier 1605 class vessels built by Blount Boats
. Licenses for 58 Sentinel-class Fast Response Cutters based on Damen’s 47m Stan Patrol 4708 have also been sold.