Bouchard Transportation Co., Melville, N.Y., has been nominated as a finalist for the 2017 Lloyd’s List Americas Award for Ship Operator of the Year. The nomination recognizes Bouchard’s fleet expansion with major new ATB units, and the company’s sharp focus on safety.

Finalists and industry executives will gather May 25 in New York City for the awards.

Bouchard achieved major accomplishments in 2016, including the commissioning of the ATBs Donna J. Bouchard/ B. No. 272 and Kim M. Bouchard B. No. 270, both recognized as WorkBoat Significant Boats of 2016. The 150’x50’x29’, 10,000-hp tugs and 628’5”x91’x47’, 255,000 bbl.  barges, designed by Guarino & Cox and built by VT Halter Marine,  are among the biggest in the industry.

The company’s expansion program also included two new 138'x38'x22', 6,000-hp ATB tugs, the  Frederick E. Bouchard and Morton S. Bouchard Jr., and converting two barges to the Intercon ATB system.

Company officials say those investments have increased fuel efficiency, capacity, and speed in the fleet, while expanding the ATB fleet to 20 and an operation “that continues to perform well above industry standards.” The technological innovations and safety features built into the new vessels “allow for an efficient operation that limits risk by providing environmental protection, a safe work environment for the crew, and a reliable service for customers,” the company said.

Company president and CEO Morton S. Bouchard III said “it’s an honor to be recognized for our vast achievements over the past year, particularly as we near our milestone anniversary of 100 years in 2018. We are dedicated and committed to our customers, maintaining our equipment to the highest standards, and most importantly, the safety of our operation. These are all integral parts of a corporate philosophy that will continue to drive our business forward.”

Contributing Editor Kirk Moore was a reporter for the Asbury Park Press for over 30 years before joining WorkBoat in 2015. He wrote several award-winning stories on marine, environmental, coastal and military issues that helped drive federal and state government policy changes. He has also been an editor for WorkBoat’s sister publication, National Fisherman, for over 25 years. Moore was awarded the Online News Association 2011 Knight Award for Public Service for the “Barnegat Bay Under Stress,” 2010 series that led to the New Jersey state government’s restoration plan. He lives in West Creek, N.J.