On 10 August a keel-laying ceremony was held at Great Lakes Shipyard in Cleveland, Ohio for 10 Damen Stan Tugs 1907 ICE. The vessels will be Ice Class and operated by the yard’s affiliate company, The Great Lakes Towing Company, replacing existing tonnage. These will be the first tugs to be designed and built to comply with the new Subchapter M Coast Guard regulations.
Damen’s Houston-based manager for North America, Jan van Hogerwou, is excited to confirm that under the licence, 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 US over the years”.
The ten 1907 tugs will be the first in the USA to be designed and built to comply with the US 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 United States. Most of the designs have been refined to meet the needs of US 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 USA under Damen’s Technical Cooperation programme, over 200 Damen vessels have been built under licence in the USA since the mid-1990s. These include eighty 26-metre patrol boats for the US 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. Licences for 58 Sentinel-class Fast Response Cutters based on Damen’s 47m Stan Patrol 4708 have also been sold.