The 1374 gt, 8,050 bhp tug is now a veteran of transatlantic tows with this its sixth tow since 2016. Typically the tows begin in Montreal where the tug connects to a retired Great Lakes ship and sets off down river with a local tug as tethered stern escort. Recent tows have used the Océan Echo II, which stays with the ship until the Escoumins pilot station.
With a short tow line VB Hispania wends its way through the narrow channel north of Ile-aux-Coudres, at a blistering 4.9 knots. Once into the wider river, the tow line is let out and speed increases by several knots.
It sailed for Halco as Montcliffe Hall until 1988, then N.M.Paterson + Sons as Cartierdoc until 2002 when CSL bought the ship and renamed it Cedarglen. The ship apparently operated until last year when it was laid up in Toledo, OH. It sailed down the Seaway on its own power, arriving in Montreal on May 18 of this year.
VB Hispania flies the Malta flag for the large Spanish tug operator Boluda. It was built in 2011 by Damen Mangalia, Romania, as Triton Responder, but was delivered as Oceanus, and transferred to the parent company and renamed Fairplay 32. In 2015 Boluda acquired and renamed the tug.