FMT orders five more towboats from Eastern

MANDEVILLE, La. - Eastern Shipbuilding Group announced this week that Florida Marine Transporters, based here, have exercised options for up to five additional 90’x32’x10’ Canal-class inland towboats. Last December, Panama City, Fla.-based Eastern delivered the Blake Boyd to Florida Marine, the 55th towboat built by Eastern for FMT. This series of towboats originally began with a 25-vessel contract starting in 2006. It has expanded to become what the companies say is the largest single towboat design/build contract in history.

A Canal-class towboat under construction at Eastern Shipbuilding. Photo by David Krapf.

The new contract is for one towboat with four options and will be constructed from a design furnished by Gilbert Associates Inc., Boston.  

The new vessels will be the first in the Canal-class series with Tier 3 main propulsion engines and generators, powered by two Caterpillar 3512C Tier 3 diesel engines rated at 1,500 hp at 1,600 rpm, provided by Louisiana Power Systems. The reduction gears are direct coupled Twin-Disc MG-5600 with 6.04:1 reduction ratios, supplied by Sewart Supply Inc. of Harvey, La. Electrical power is provided by two 99kW John Deere 4045AFM85 99KW Tier 3 generator sets rated for 60 Hz, at 208 VAC, provided by Kennedy Engine Company of Biloxi, Miss. These diesel engines comply with the current EPA/MARPOL control of emissions of nitrogen oxides from marine diesel engines.