MARCH 17, 2016—Burger Boat Company, Manitowoc, WI, has begun the construction of a custom 103 ft 6 in x 26 ft 5 in full displacement steel and aluminum Explorer Motor Yacht designed
SEPTEMBER 8, 2014—Burger Boat Company, Manitowoc, WI, recently launched the 78 ft research vessel Arcticus for the United States Geological Survey (USGS). The Arcticus replaces the 38-year-old R/V Grayling bringing the USGS Great Lakes Science Center
JULY 29, 2014 — Burger Boat Company is to build an 89 ft (27m) steel passenger vessel for Wendella Sightseeing Company, Chicago, IL. Styled after other vessels in the company’s fleet, it
Anyone needing reassurance that the shipbuilding sector in the United States is alive and well need look no further than the Great Lakes. While yards along the U.S. Gulf reshuffle business strategies to help during the down oil market, yards along the Great Lakes continue to work on a number of projects, investing in infrastructure and leveraging partnerships to diversify portfolio offerings.
Perhaps the busiest group of all is Fincantieri Marine Group (FMG)—the U.S. subsidiary of one of the world’s largest shipbuilders in the world, Fincantieri. The Fincantieri Marine Group is comprised of three Great Lakes shipyards—Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding (FBS), Fincantieri Marinette Marine (FMM), and Fincantieri ACE Marine (FAM).
Since acquiring the Wisconsin yards in 2008, Fincantieri has invested well over $100 million to build a shipbuilding group that will provide flexibility for its customers, and provide construction and repair services to both the government and commercial sectors.
Sturgeon Bay, WI-based Fincantieri Bay Shipbuilding (FBS), which is one of the last boat builders remaining in the Bay, has been essentially non-stop the last couple of years. The yard currently has numerous projects under various stages of construction with a backlog that extends through 2018. Most notably, the projects include newbuilds for one of the most active sectors in the country, the ATB market.
This past May, the yard delivered the Articulated Tug Barge (ATB) unit Barbara Carol Ann Moran and the 110,000 barrel ocean tank barge Louisiana to Moran Towing Corporation, New Canaan, CT. The unit was the third delivery to Moran under a 2014 contract.
The 5,300 HP, 121 ft ATB tug Barbara Carol Ann Moran is certified ABS Class +A-1 Towing Service, +AMS, and is equipped with state-of-the-art navigation and communications technology.
What made the delivery of the unit so impressive was that it was delivered on the exact day called for by the contract—emphasizing FBS’ high standards of meeting customer requirements, building a quality vessel and delivering on time.
Currently, FBS is under contract to construct two ATB tugs and two ocean going tank barges for Kirby Corporation; one ATB tug and one oceangoing tank barge for Plains All American Pipeline, LP; and one ATB tug and one oceangoing tank barge for AMA Capital Partners.
“We continue to be optimistic about the future of the industry we serve,” says, Todd Thayse, Fincantieri Bay Shipyard Vice President and General Manager.
To keep the momentum going, Fincantieri recently purchased the Palmer Johnson facility adjacent to the Bay Shipbuilding yard. Bay Shipbuilding has extensive expansion plans set for the 3-acre site, including the construction of new indoor Fabrication/Erection facilities, an indoor Blast and Coating building, outfitting shops and additional office facilities.
“This recent acquisition of the former Palmer Johnson facility has been well received by the industry and will allow us to pursue several new construction projects, which may include fishing vessels, ferries and landing crafts, while continuing to serve our core ATB market. These purpose-designed buildings will increase our overall output and capacity and improve our ability to meet critical schedules,” says Thayse.
“We will also be able to move more construction indoors which will allow FBS to further provide cost-effective solutions for our customers,” he added.
Indoor facilities will enable work to be ongoing for both newbuilds and repair work—especially during the winter months when Great Lakes fleet repairs are vital and time sensitive.
Earlier this year, FBS had 17 vessels at the yard undergoing winter repairs well into April. The vessels ranged from thousand-foot long bulk tankers, to medium-sized ships, to tugs and barges. Work included large-scale scheduled maintenance repairs, scrubber installations, repowering and structural steel renewal, in addition to electrical automation enhancement and ABS and U.S. Coast Guard inspections.
Additionally, Keylakes Shipping’s 768 ft bulk carrier John G. Munson is currently undergoing conversion at Bay Shipbuilding. The vessel is the tenth steam-to-diesel, or diesel-to-diesel repowering project that FBS has been awarded since 2009. The freighter, built in 1952 will undergo a complete repower at FBS. It is expected to undergo sea trials in 2018.
Meanwhile, FMG’s two other Great Lakes shipyards are busy constructing the next generation of warships for the U.S. Navy.
Earlier this summer, a keel laying ceremony was held at Fincantieri Marinette Marine, Marinette, WI, for the U.S. Navy’s 17th Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), the USS Indianapolis. The ship is one of six in various stages of construction at FMM, with an additional three ships in long-lead procurement. The yard has already delivered four LCS ships to the Navy—the USS Freedom (the lead ship in the Freedom variant), the USS Fort Worth, the USS Milwaukee and the USS Detroit.
The Lockheed Martin-led team is made up of Fincantieri Marinette Marine, along with naval architectural firm Gibbs & Cox, and more than 500 suppliers across 37 states. The U.S. Navy’s LCS construction program is divided between two groups—the Lockheed Martin team, building the Freedom variant, and the General Dynamics-led team, with Alabama-based Austal USA building the Independence class LCS.
Fincantieri Ace Marine, Green Bay, WI, also has a hand in producing the Freedom variant of the LCS. The yard, which specializes in the design and construction of high-speed coastal intercept and patrol vessels, most notably the builder of the Response Boat-Medium (RB-M) for the U.S. Coast Guard, produces the aluminum superstructures and additional aluminum components for the class.
To top off FMG’s three shipyards success, all three received the annual “Excellence in Safety” award from the Shipbuilders Council of America earlier this year. The award recognizes a shipyard’s commitment to safety, and the hard work and dedication put forth from shipyard employees.
The Great Lakes Group Eyes Expansion, Partners with Damen
FMG isn’t the only regional player seeking to further develop. This past June, the City of Cleveland authorized the sale of property adjacent to the Great Lakes Towing company headquarters. The acquisition of the property will enable the Great Lakes Shipyard, part of The Great Lakes Group, to operate at full capacity, all year round.
The expansion will include a 68,000 square foot facility that will accommodate a state-of-the-art 770-ton mobile Marine Travelift crane—the largest on the Great Lakes, and third largest in the world.
Great Lakes Group says that with the new facility in place, the Great Lakes Shipyard will be able to continuously provide all services for new vessel construction, as well as custom fabrication, ship maintenance and repairs.
Part of the services Great Lakes Shipyard will offer are those required for Subchapter M. Under Subchapter M regulations, towing vessels greater than 26 ft, or any vessel type moving dangerous or hazardous materials, must obtain a Certificate of Inspection documenting: Drydock inspection; Internal Structure Exam; Annual Inspection and Surveys; and Machinery and Electrical.
Just last month, the yard kicked off construction for the first Damen Stan Tug 1907 ICE. The tug is the first in a series of ten being built in compliance with the new Subchapter M regulations. The tugs are being built for The Great Lakes Towing Company (the Towing Company).
The tugs will measure 65 ft x 24 ft x 9 ft and will be powered by two MTU 8V4000 M54R engines generating 1,000 hp at 1,600 rev/min.
“This new construction program is further evidence of the innovative spirit the Towing Company has always embraced since its founding over 117 years ago, and reflects the commitment we have to our customers and the entire Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Seaway marine transportation industry,” says Joe Starck, President of the Towing Company.
Under the construction program two new harbor tugs will be introduced each year for the next five years—helping to stabilize operations and improve day-to-day business, assures Starck.
“The tugs,” he added, “will be ideal for the long-term sustainability of our harbor towing activities, and provide our customers with an even greater level of reliability, performance, and safety, across our entire Great Lakes service network.”
The Great Lakes Towing Company’s fleet provides ship assist, cargo transportation and logistics, ice breaking, and emergency assistance for every kind of vessel, barge and marine structure on the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway.
The Damen Stan Tug 1907 ICE are also the first tugs to be built in the U.S. under Damen’s Technical Cooperation program with Great Lakes Shipyard. The agreement, which was entered into at last year’s Workboat show, authorizes the Great Lakes Shipyard as an official builder of Damen designs for the next five years.
Burger Boat’s diverse portfolio
Since 1863 Burger Boat Company, Manitowoc, WI, has done everything in its power to meet the needs of its growing customer base. The boat builder, which has delivered countless vessel types in the range of 50 ft to 200 ft in length, implements what it calls a “lean” philosophy to its business practice, ensuring procedures are performed and completed on time, and vessels are delivered to customers on budget.
A builder of steel and aluminum vessels, Burger builds everything from yachts to passenger vessels, such as the 98 ft passenger vessel Chicago’s Classic Lady for Chicago’s First Lady Cruises—and patrol to research vessels, such as the 78 ft research vessel Arcticus which was delivered to the U.S. Geological Survey in 2014, just to name is a few.
Last year, Burger delivered a tour boat to Chicago-based Wendella Boats. The 340- passenger Lucia is an 89 ft steel vessel that was designed by Timothy Graul Marine Design, Sturgeon Bay, WI. The steel boat is certified USCG Subchapter K, and is powered by two Caterpillar C12 main engines and features two Northern Lights generators.
Most recently, Burger began construction on a custom 103 ft 6 in x 26 ft 5 in full displacement steel and aluminum Explorer Motor Yacht for an unnamed owner.
The expedition style motor yacht has a steel hull and aluminum superstructure. The vessel, designed by DeBasto Design, Miami, FL, will be launched Spring 2017. The ABS class yacht will be powered by two Cat C-18 ACERT main engines, and will be able to reach a cruising speed of 12 knots.
Fraser faces OSHA fine
Located in Superior Wisconsin, on the St. Louis Bay of Lake Superior, Fraser Shipyards, part of the Fraser Industries group which also includes boat builders Lake Assault Boats, provides full shipyard services from its sixty five acre site, featuring two dry docks and approximately 2,200 feet of berthing space. Since 1890, Fraser Shipyards has been a prominent fixture in the Twin Ports of Duluth and Superior, serving the Great Lakes shipping community. Most of its current 150 workers, 75 percent of which are structural welders, equipment operators, fitters and pipe fitters, are third generation employees for the company.
That kind of longevity and loyalty from workers can serve as a testament to Fraser’s commitment to the industry, the community and its employees, but recent findings have raised questions about the yard’s safety culture.
Last month, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced that sampling results taken during a recent retrofit determined that 14 of Fraser Shipyards workers were exposed to heavy metals and had lead levels 20 times higher than the exposure limit.
According to OSHA’s Assistant Secretary of Labor, Dr. David Michaels, “Fraser Shipyards accepted a contract with a very low profit margin and penalties for delayed completion, but could not meet the schedule without endangering its workers.”
That contract, from Interlake Steamship Company, Middleburg Heights, OH, was for the modernization of the Herbert C. Jackson. OSHA stated in its report that Fraser Shipyards’ management was aware of the presence of lead and asbestos throughout the 1959 built vessel. The ship arrived at Fraser December 2015 for a six-month retrofit project and was required back in operation for the summer iron ore shipping season.
In a statement, James Farkas, President and Chief Operating Officer of Fraser Industries, said “We are a family-owned company that has been in Superior for 126 years. We see all of our employees, laborers and contractors as part of the family.”
He added, “We take the health and safety of our people and our community seriously. We acted to protect our people as soon as we learned of the problem. We have worked with all of our employees, laborers and contractors to ensure their health by bringing in medical experts, as well as the highest levels of testing, protective equipment and safe operating procedures. We strongly disagree with OSHA’s statement that any of the issues were caused or worsened by business or profit motivations.”
The agency cited 14 willful egregious health violations for each instance of overexposing a worker to lead, and cited five additional willful violations for failing to conduct monitoring to assess lead exposure and failing to implement a lead compliance or respiratory program.
Additionally, OSHA issued 10 serious violations to the company, and placed Fraser Shipyards in its Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP). For companies on the list, mandatory follow-up inspections become the norm.
Since the findings, Fraser has taken steps to help mediate the matter, and protect its employees. According to a statement, as soon as the management learned of the high lead levels it halted work on the Herbert C. Jackson. Fraser Shipyards also went on to engage medical experts from the region’s two leading hospitals, and industrial safety experts from the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers union to advise the company and oversee health testing. And it purchased state-of-the-art safety gear and equipment to protect workers.
Additionally, Fraser engaged medical professionals, OSHA and union officials to develop and implement new safety procedures.
“We appreciate their responsiveness to getting this issue fixed and taking care our members,” said Mark Garrett, Director of Health and Safety Services for the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers, the union that represents workers at the yard. “We don’t get many employers that step up like they did. They were straightforward, asked for our help and put in place our recommendations for safety.”
In total, Fraser could face close to $1.4m in OSHA penalties.
OCTOBER 1, 2013 — JMS Naval Architects, Mystic, CT, has won a competitively awarded contract from the Virginia Institute of Marine Science to provide concept through contract-level design, shipyard bid support, and
The Naval Sea Systems Command is conducting market research to determine the availability of new construction of thirty Fast Patrol Vessels. They would be procured under a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) case
JULY 21, 2017 — The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said today that it is providing an EUR 27.5 million to Turkish ship operator Alternative Transport that will help it
JULY 21, 2016 —New Bedford, MA, based boat design firm C. Raymond Hunt Associates,is now celebrating its 50th year, continuing to expand on the legacy of its founder, C. Raymond Hunt, to
MAY 18, 2016 — To accommodate increasing freight volumes, Copenhagen headquartered DFDS has entered into an agreement with the Siem Group to bareboat-charter two RO/RO freight newbuildings for a five-year period. As
“In the more than seven years that Shell has held leases in the Chukchi, it has only recently been allowed to complete a single well. What we have here is a case in which a company’s commercial efforts could not overcome a burdensome and often contradictory regulatory environment,” says Murkowski. “The Interior Department has made no effort to extend lease terms, as recommended by the National Petroleum Council. Instead, Interior placed significant limits on this season’s activities, which resulted in a drilling rig sitting idle, and is widely expected to issue additional regulations in the coming weeks that will make it even harder to drill. Add this all up, and it is clear that the federal regulatory environment—uncertain, ever-changing, and continuing to deteriorate—was a significant factor in Shell’s decision.”
Murkowski made the point that just because the U.S. has created a difficult environment for offshore drilling in the Arctic, it doesn’t mean other countries have. “Development in the Arctic is going to happen—if not here, then in Russia and Canada, and by non-Arctic nations,” says Murkowski. “I personally believe that America should lead the way. The Arctic is crucial to our entire nation’s future, and we can no longer rely solely on private companies to bring investments in science and infrastructure to the region. As the Arctic continues to open, we urgently need to accelerate our national security investments in icebreakers, ports, and other necessities.”
Some Congressional opponents of Arctic drilling applauded Shell’s move. Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) called offshore Arctic drilling “unacceptable” and irresponsible. Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA) went so far as to introduce the Stop Arctic Ocean Drilling Act of 2015, which would prohibit new or renewed oil and gas leasing in the Arctic Ocean Planning Areas of the Outer Continental Shelf.
But this should probably be viewed more like a pause as opposed to a full stop. A more favorable regulatory environment for Arctic offshore drilling could develop if a Republican is in the White House in 2017 backed by a Republican-controlled Congress. Additionally, cheap oil and gas should also increase consumption and eventually lead to higher prices and make Arctic drilling more economically attractive.
Shipyards, naval architects team on projects
Portland, OR, headquartered Vigor Industrial, the largest shipyard group in the Pacific Northwest with 12 facilities in Alaska, Washington, and Oregon, had bolstered its capabilities in anticipation of an increased workload. It added an 80,000-ton lifting capacity dry dock to enhance its ship repair and maintenance capabilities and merged with Kvichak Marine Industries, Seattle, WA, to add capabilities in new aluminum vessel construction. Vigor had supported Shell’s earlier efforts in Alaska, including the activation of the drilling barge Kulluk, and more recently repaired the damaged icebreaker Fennica.
Vigor is part of a vibrant Washington State maritime cluster that includes logistics and shipping, fishing and seafood, and shipbuilding and repair. According to a recent economic impact study, generated 148,000 direct and indirect jobs and directly creates $15.2 billion in gross business income and has a total impact of $30 billion on the state’s economy.
Back in March, Vigor “christened” its dry dock Vigourous with work on the cruise ship Norwegian Star and followed that up with repairs to the USNS John Glenn and USNS Montford Point. Now Vigor will turn its attention to completing the third Olympic Class 144-car ferry for Washington State Ferries and look forward to building the fourth in the series, which recently received $122 million in funding by the state legislature. There’s plenty of more coverage on the ferry market in this issue, including Seattle-based Elliott Bay Design Group’s support of ferry projects for the New York City Department of Transportation and Texas Department of Transportation.
Special launch system
Designed by Seattle-based naval architectural firm Guido Perla Associates, Inc., the144-car ferry is a joint construction effort between Vigor and neighboring Nichols Brothers Boat Builders, Whidbey Island, WA. Nichols Brothers Boat Builders has been contracted to build the superstructure for the first three Olympic Class ferries. Nichols Brothers Boat Builders has used a new track and dolly system developed by Engineered Heavy Service (EHS), Everett, WA, for transferring the ferry superstructures it on to a barge for transport to assembly with the hull at Vigor Fab in Seattle.
That same transfer system is pictured on this month’s cover, to launch the ATB tug Nancy Peterkin, the first of two 136 ft x 44 ft x 19 ft sister ATB tugs being built for Kirby Offshore Marine.
This past May, Gunderson Marine, Portland, OR, had launched the Kirby 185-01, a oil & chemical tank barge.
The Nancy Peterkin’s sister ATB tug, the Tina Pyne, is set for launch this December.
The EHS launch system moved the ATB from the shipyard to the launch ramp. General Construction provided two floating cranes to assist in the final lifting of the vessel, shuttling it to deeper water.
The vessel was towed to Everett, for lightship, stability testing and fuel transfer. Following this the tug will be towed to Nichols Brothers outfitting pier in Langley, WA, located across the Puget Sound from Everett, WA, for final outfitting, dock and sea trials before its final delivery.
Used for vessels greater than 1,000 tons, the new launch system significantly increases the displacement and draft of the vessels that Nichols Brothers can haul and launch in the future. Currently the shipbuilder is engineering to install ridged buoyancy tanks to the side of the launch frame, eliminating the need for the floating cranes in the future.
Nichols Brothers followed up the launch with the signing of a construction security agreement with Kirby Offshore Marine to build two new 120 ft x 35 ft x 19 ft-3 in tugs. Each tug will be powered by two Caterpillar 3516C, 2,447 bhp at 1,600 rev/min main engines with Reintjes reduction gears turning two NautiCAN fixed pitched propellers with fixed nozzles. Karl Senner, Inc., Kenner, LA, supplied the reduction gears for the vessel. These vessels will also have two C7.1 Caterpillar generators for electrical service. Selected deck machinery includes one TESD-34 Markey tow winch, one CEW-60 Markey electric capstan, and one Smith Berger Tow Pin.
Keels will be laid for both vessels this fall with delivery of the first vessel scheduled for May 2017 and the second vessel is scheduled for delivery in November 2017.
Jensen Maritime Consultants, Seattle, the naval architectural and engineering arm of Crowley Maritime, will provide the ABS Class and functional design for the tugboats. These tugboats will carry an ABS loadline, compliant with USCG, as required at delivery.
Nichols Brothers is currently working on the second ATB Tug for Kirby Offshore Marine.
Nichols Brothers spokesperson Lacey Greene says the shipyard has just begun construction of the American Samoa 140 ft Multi-Purpose Cargo/Passenger Ferry, and next year will begin construction on the superstructure and final assembly of the WETA 400-passenger high speed catamarans.
“The vessel construction boom in the Pacific Northwest has impacted the economy in so many different ways,” says Greene. “Specific to our location our community is flourishing. Nichols Brothers is the largest private employer on Whidbey Island in Washington State and employs 300 men and women. We foresee the economic boom expanding even further; the tug market is strong in all aspects, from ATB tugs, tractor Tugs, to line tugs. We also see the passenger vessel industry sector thriving, and we predict additional passenger only high-speed ferries coming down the pipeline as well as leisure vessels.”
Jensen Maritime is also providing construction management services for the Crowley product tankers under construction at Aker Philadelphia Shipyard. It’s also been busy working on developing LNG bunker barge concepts and recently received approval from ABS for a 452 ft-long ATB version.
Engineering consultant Art Anderson Associates, Bremerton, WA, has been increasing its staff and supporting the development of passenger-only ferry service in Puget Sound. Art Anderson’s Patrick R. Vasicek, PE, LEED AP, will be on hand at the Marine Log FERRIES 2015 Conference & Expo in Seattle to discuss, “An Exportable Life Cycle Assessment Tool for Determining Sustainable Visibility of Passenger-Only Ferry Routes and Systems.”
Ballast water treatment solution
Seattle-based naval architectural and engineering consultancy Glosten reports that Marine Systems Inc. (MSI) has delivered a pair of Ballast Treatment System Deck Modules, designed for tank barge and ship operations.
MSI turned to Glosten to develop the design in response to requests from vessel operators and the first of a kind modular ballast water treatment units combine expertise from Glosten, MSI and Alfa Laval, which provided PureBallast 3.1 treatment systems, Filtrex high efficiency filters, and expertise from hundreds of ballast water management system installations.
The resulting modules, built at the Foss Seattle Shipyard, complete with lighting, ventilation, and integrated controls, were shipped ready for “plug-and-play.”
Each Ballast Module packs a treatment capacity of 1,000 m3/hr within a 20-foot shipping container footprint and is ABS and U.S. Coast Guard approved for hazardous area installations.
Using the module reduces the technical demands on busy shipyards. Rather than juggling independent components and vendors, shipyards can instead focus on fabricating a few well-defined interfaces and foundation system. Each purchased module comes pre-approved by USCG and ABS, is fully tested prior to shipment, and includes integration support from MSI and Glosten engineers.
“The demands of the vessel operator drove this design,” says Kevin Reynolds, Principal at Glosten. “Doing this as a manufactured product ensures that we get it right, every time.”