Maritime Partners has passed another milestone in its fleet expansion campaign, with delivery of another new towboat, as US inland waterways infrastructure gets another injection of funding
The Louisiana-headquartered owner has taken delivery of the fourth towboat in a newbuilding series from shipbuilder C&C Marine and Repair, with 26.5-m towboat Ned Brooks arriving in late May 2021. This vessel was built with a beam of 10.3 m and 1,940 kW of installed power to operate along US waterways, such as the Lower Mississippi River system.
This addition comes as the US Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) made available US$10.82M in grant funding for the America’s Marine Highway Program (AMHP).
These grants will be used to upgrade sections of US’ 40,000 km of navigable waterways for cargo transportation, reducing congestion and introducing new marine-based transportation options in communities.
“AMHP increases the use of environmentally sustainable practices to move freight across our transportation system.” said US Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.
“These investments help local communities to reduce congestion and create more economic opportunities.”
Funding would help to further integrate coastal and inland waterways into the existing transportation system, providing alternative options to traditional shipping methods.
Maritime Partners expects demand for inland transportation to grow and has commissioned C&C Marine to build 15 new towboats, of which Ned Brooks is the fourth.
It was designed by Entech Design and installed with two Cummins QSK38-M1 main engines driving propellers through Reintjes WAF 665 reduction gears, provided by Karl Senner.
Rio Marine and Hydraulic supplied Ned Brooks’ steering and monitoring systems. The towboat also has a pair of Cummins QSB7-DM 99-kw generators. Ned Brooks’ navigation and communication equipment includes Furuno radar, satellite compass, AIS, Intellian satellite TV antenna and a standard VHF radio.
C&C Marine expects to deliver the next towboat in this newbuilding series in June 2021.
MARAD said since the inception of the AMHP, the programme has designated 45 marine highway projects, 21 of which are currently operating.
These include container-on-barge services and creating corridors between ports to reduce congestion and remove goods transported on roadways.
Only marine highway projects previously designated by the Secretary of Transportation are eligible to receive funding under the latest AMHP and applications for grants must be submitted by 4 June 2021.
In New York state, the Rochester fire department took delivery of a new fireboat for operations in the Great Lakes. This was built by California-based boatbuilder Moose Boats as the first of these vessels to operate in the Great Lakes.
Riviera Maritime Media’s ITS Salvage Webinar Week is being held 15 June 2021 – use this link for more details and to register