Sunday, July 26, 2015

Return (with some corrections)

In a somewhat surprising return to Halifax, the tug Océan Arctique, which has had its own strange career,  is due July 28 towing two barges.

Originally the second of a two tug order from Nordane Shipping of Denmark, construction of the tug began in 2003 at the Ile-aux-Coudres shipyard of Industrie Océan. Unfortunately, due to issues related to construction of the first tug in the order (Stevns Océan) the yard had to re-organize. This tug was therefore launched September 16, 2004 as a shell only.

Irving Shipbuilding, which was also building tugs for Nordane, took over the shell, and Atlantic Teak towed it to Halifax. The tug was hauled up the old launchway at Halifax Shipyard, where its superstructure was removed. The two halves then moved into the old building hall where it was completed at Stevns Arctic.It  re-launched April 8, 2005 and sailed for Denmark in September 2005.

In a surprise move, Groupe Océan acquired the two tugs on a charter arrangement when they took over the tug contract for the Iron Ore Company of Canada in Sept-Iles, QC in 2013. The two sister tugs arrived in company at Ile-aux-Coudres, QC, August 7, 2013. Renamed Stevns Océan and Océan Arctique they were are stationed at Sept-Iles, but the collapse of world iron ore demand resulted in the reassignment of Océan Arctique to general towing and winter pilotage work in Quebec City. [Turns out that  Océan Arctique was in Quebec for repairs and is still based in Sept-Iles, although temporarily replaced by Océan Yvan Desgagnes.]

 Left to right: André H. Océan Arctique, Océan Echo II, Océan Charlie. Note the gangways in stalled on Océan Arctique's deck house, similar to those on Océan Charlie. These are used for winter pilot boarding at Quebec City Sept-Iles, which keeps the pilot well above the level of any ice in the river bay. Stevns Océan has been similarly equipped.
Adding to the surprise factor, its arrival in Halifax again, is the nature of the tow. More of that will be covered in Shipfax on the day.


1 comment:

  1. Maybe towing some of the decommissioned RCN vessels for scrapping?