October 7, 2014—A tug that serves as a memorial to British Columbia's towing industry has received a touch up thanks to a donation from Seaspan's Vancouver Shipyards. The North Vancouver-based yard recently completed volunteer repair work on the Steam Tow Boat Master (SS Master) as part of its $50,000 donation to the SS Master Society.
Built in 1922, the historic tug is the last remaining example of a once formidable fleet of wooden-hulled, steam-powered towboats on the West Coast. Between 1922 to 1959 the SS Master operated over a million miles, towing logs and barges in the Georgie Strait and beyond.
As part of the repair project, the tug underwent under-water maintenance work, including docking, pressure washing, painting and other general repairs.
“We are pleased to support a key community partner and help to maintain a storied vessel that has such deep-rooted ties to the waters and rich history of B.C.’s marine industry,” said Tony Matergio, Vice President and General Manager, Vancouver Shipyards. “Our commitment to the SS Master Society demonstrates Seaspan’s latest investment in helping strengthen our maritime history and culture.”
“The docking of the SS Master at Seaspan for new bottom paint and inspection represents a significant step for the SS Master Society’s goal of preserving this iconic heritage towboat,” said David Bradford, President, SS Master Society. “The Society is immensely grateful to Seaspan for providing this critical service, and beyond that, we have found cordiality and professionalism at every turn that speaks to the fact that Seaspan is truly building not only ships but a legacy of excellence.”
Seaspan completed the SS Master’s repair work at its new state-of-the-art, $185 million facility in North Vancouver, the result of a two-year Shipyard Modernization Project slated for completion later this Fall.