USCG issues first West Coast Subchapter M COI

Written by Nick Blenkey
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Back row (L to R): Chris Springer, District 13 USCG; Bill Collins, Tidewater EHS&S Director; Josh Jarman, Tidewater Quality & Compliance Manager; Marc Schwartz, Tidewater Maintenance & Engineering Manager; Craig Nelson, Tidewater Vessel Operations Manager; Bruce Reed, Tidewater VP & COO; Josh Nichols, Tidewater Captain & Assistant Port Captain. Front row (L to R): Austin Murai, MSTC USCG; Brian Fletcher, Tidewater Port Captain; Jeff Deronde, MST1 USCG

MAY 18, 2018 — Tidewater Transportation and Terminals of Vancouver, WA, today announced that the Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance and the Coast Guard Sector Columbia River has issued a Certificate of Inspection (COI) to the towing vessel Crown Point for compliance under the United States Coast Guard’s (USCG) Subchapter M – safety regulations governing the inspection, standards and safety management systems of towing vessels. This COI is the first issued to a West Coast (PACAREA) tugboat/towboat operator.

The Crown Point is the first of three custom-built, state-of-the-art river towboats built for Tidewater in 2015 by Vigor’s Portland, OR, shipyard (see earlier story). Measuring 102′ x 38’x 14′, the 2,240 BHP Crown Point was specifically designed and built for the 465 mile Columbia-Snake River system, and incorporates many advanced concepts to set new standards in safety and efficiency.

“We operate under a safety management system that puts the health and safety of the public, our environment, and our employees first,” says Bill Collins, Tidewater’s Director of Environmental, Health, Safety and Security (EHS&S). “All of our tugs meet or exceed the increasingly stringent industry requirements for towing vessels.”

“The issuance of this COI represents a significant accomplishment by Tidewater,” said Bruce Reed, Tidewater Vice-President and Chief Operations Officer. “It is a testament to the skills, dedication, and thoroughness of our marine employees, and Operations and EHS&S departments.”

More than 5,500 U.S.-flagged towing vessels will need to be compliant to the new USCG regulation by July 20, 2018. The certification not only demonstrates full compliance with the Subchapter M requirements, but also shows a commitment to a more comprehensive approach to safety and environmental protection.

Tidewater operates the largest barge transportation and terminal network on the Columbia-Snake River system. Tidewater transports a wide range of cargo among a network of ports, terminals and grain elevators throughout the entire Columbia-system. It also operates five strategically located terminals and five pipelines with key intermodal connections to railroads, highways and other pipelines.

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