JUNE 15, 2013—Privately held Florida Marine Transporters, Inc., Mandeville, LA, recently exercised an option for the construction of four additional 90 ft x 32 ft x10 ft Canal Class Inland Towboats at Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Panama City, FL.
FMT, which transports both liquid and dry bulk cargoes, is controlled by owner Dennis Pasentine, who acquired the company in 1998. The FMT fleet is valued at more than $1.5 billion and includes 275 tank barges for Class D cargoes, over 270 tank barges rated Subchapter O for chemicals; 59 Canal Class towboats ranging in horsepower from 1,700 to 2,800; 16 River Class towboats ranging in horsepower from 3,300 to 6,000; 13 pressurized LNG barges; 50 heavy-duty hopper barges for aggregate cargoes; three spud barges; three drydocks rated from 1,000 tons to 3,000 tons; 10 service barges for oil pollution cleanup; and a bow steering unit featuring state-of-the-art technology.
With this most recent order, FMT will have contracted Eastern Shipbuilding to build a total of 60 towboats based on a common design furnished by naval architectural firm Gilbert Associates, Inc., Boston, MA.
This series of towboats started back in 2006 with an initial order for 25 vessels and has expanded to become the largest new construction program of the same class towboat design with a single shipbuilder in U.S. history.
Propulsion power for each towboat will be supplied by two Caterpillar 3512C Tier 3 diesel engines rated at 1,500 hp at 1,600 rev/min. The Cat engines were supplied by Louisiana Power Systems. The reduction gears are direct coupled Twin-Disc Model MG-5600 with a 6.04:1 reduction supplied by Sewart Supply, Inc., Harvey, LA.
Electrical power is provided by two 99kW John Deere 4045AFM85 99KW Tier 3 generator sets rated for 60 Hz, at 208 VAC provided by Kennedy Engine Company of Biloxi, MS. The diesel engines comply with the current EPA/MARPOL regulation regarding NOx emissions.