Two new escort tugs to join Port of Halifax tugboat fleet

Written by Marine Log Staff
Port of Halifax new tugs

Photo: Atlantic Towing

Atlantic Towing Limited, a member of the J.D. Irving Limited family of companies, and Svitzer report that they have made a significant joint investment in the modernization of the Port of Halifax, Nova Scotia, tugboat fleet by acquiring two new RAstar 3200 series escort tugboats, each with an 85-ton bollard pull.

The Port of Halifax has seen substantial growth over the past decade, with a marked increase in both the number of tug jobs and the size of vessels. The new tugboats were specifically selected to accommodate the expanded volume and ensure Atlantic Towing maintains its role as the premier operator at the port.

Currently, three tugs are permanently stationed in Halifax, supplemented by two on-call vessels. The new RAstar 3200 vessels will replace the on-call tugs, offering a more robust and permanent solution.

Atlantic Towing, based in Saint John, New Brunswick, has been serving the Port of Halifax for nearly 20 years and has partnered with Svitzer, headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark, since 2010. The two new tugboats are currently under construction at the Uzmar Shipyard in Turkey and are expected to be operational later this year.

Sheldon Lace, general manager, Atlantic Towing Limited, said: “We’re excited to welcome new escort tugboats to our fleet. The investment reflects our dedication to supporting our partners and customers amid the exceptional growth in the Port of Halifax.”

Highlighting the operational benefits, Captain Adam Parsons, Harbor Master, Halifax Port Authority, said: “These new tugs are built to handle larger containerships, which are increasingly calling at Halifax, the only Eastern Canadian port capable of accommodating them. The enhanced escort capabilities in various weather conditions will boost efficiency and safety at the port.”

Arjen van Dijk, managing director, Svitzer Americas, said: “Through a collaborative effort, Svitzer’s newbuild team, along with operations and procurement departments in Copenhagen and Panama, worked closely with Atlantic Towing to identify the best technical and operational solutions. These 85-ton escort tugs from the Rastar 3200 series exemplify our commitment to co-creating effective solutions with partners.”

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