Monday, May 24, 2010

Seaspan Tugs

I attended the International Tug & Salvage Conference in Vancouver May 17-21.
The primary tug operators in Vancouver are Seaspan and Smit.

Seaspan is an amalgam of several different operators, their most recent acquisition being the fleet of Charles H. Cates. That company (with Nova Scotia roots) was the primary ship docking firm in the port. They were famed for their small and agile tugs. Before the takeover, Seaspan was a coastal operation and did ship berthing at Roberts Bank, south of Vancouver.

Seaspan is part of the Washington group, which also owns shipyards and railways, and still operates several of the former Cates tugs- distinguished by their numbering. Charles H. Cates V is typical of the last class of twin screw tugs built for Cates. Charles H. Cates III is one of the pioneering ASD tugs, designed by Robert Allan Ltd.

They also have three larger ASD tugs, of which Seaspan Falcon is typical. Although built for use at Roberts Bank, it now works in the harbour too.

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