Travelift boosts capacity at Great Lakes Shipyard

Written by Nick Blenkey

TraveliftThe Great Lakes Towing Company has commenced a major overhaul program for its Great Lakes fleet of 37 harbor assist tugboats. The 71 ft Illinois is the  first of the company’s tugs to undergo this overhaul at the company’s Cleveland, Ohio, Great Lakes Shipyard, where the new 770-ton Marine Travelift  allows several vessels at a time to be  “drydocked” on land.

The Travelift is the largest on the Great Lakes, second largest in the Western Hemisphere, and the third largest in the world. It is one of a number of enhancements at the shipyard, which is now completing the last phase of a major shipyard modernization and expansion program and has been designated as the Rolls-Royce Great Lakes Regional Service Center.  

The full-service shipyard specializes in new construction, repairs, modifications, and steel
and aluminum fabrication of all types of vessels and barges. Its most recent projects include its first contract with a Canadian tug/barge company, which was winter work on McKeil Marine’s tug/barge John Spence and Niagara Spirit.

Another interesting recent contract was conversion of the Z-drive thrusters of Interlake Steamship Company’s integrated tug/barge Dorothy Ann and Pathfinder from fixed-pitch to controllable pitch.

Other jobs have included winter work for American Steamship Company’s Buffalo; construction and delivery of a 60-foot work boat for the Port of Milwaukee; and the simultaneous construction of two 4,640 HP state-of-the-art ASD tractor tugs for Caribbean Tugz, LLC, an affiliate of SEACOR Holdings, Inc.

Next month, the shipyard will deliver another of a series of newly constructed HandySize 3200 HP multi-purpose tugs for a yet undisclosed owner. This state-of-the-art ice strengthened tug is ideal for use on the Great Lakes.

March 25, 2012

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