Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Groupe Océan veteran sold

Groupe Océan has sold one of its older tugs. Océan Hercule was sold November 1 to Jamaican owners and renamed Hercule at Sorel-Tracy, QC. The tug has been based at that port for several years since joining the Océan fleet in 1997.

The tug started life at the A.M.Liaaen shipyard in Aalesund, Norway in 1976 as Stril Pilot. A 499 grt ice strengthened anchor handling tug it was powered by two 12 cylinder Alcos (then part of the White Motor Co) delivering 4400 bhp to two controllable pitch screws in nozzles giving 63 tonnes bollard pull. Built for the the Simon Mokster company it was sold in 1981 and renamed Spirit Sky for the Bergvall Group. In 1985 it moved on to the Dutch company Goliath then Wijsmuller and back to Goliath, where it was renamed Ierland then in 1989 becoming Ierlandia.

Charles-Antoine in McAllister colours leaving Halifax towing the barge Marmac 15 from New York to the Gulf of St.Lawrence for the first attempt to raise the sunken barge Irving Whale

The McAllister Towing Company of Montreal acquired the tug in 1995, and it was renamed Charles-Antoine. The owners of McAllister then sold the entire operation to Océan in 1997.

Renamed Océan Hercule, as stated, it was based most recently in the port of Sorel-Tracy where its ability to work in ice made it a valuable member of the fleet.

Océan Hercule at Quebec City in its original Groupe Océan colour scheme.

 Océan Hercule at Quebec City in 2005 after refit and repainting to the new Océan colours.
Océan Hercule (left) with Océan Delta, another veteran that has also been listed for sale.

With the acquisition of newer vessels, Océan had the tug listed for sale for several years and now it has finally been sold. It was due to move to Montreal this week before heading out for Jamaica.


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