Vane Brothers, Baltimore, Maryland, has expanded operations to the U.S. West Coast. The familiar blue “V” can be seen on some of the company’s newest tugboats moving petroleum barges through the waters of the Pacific Northwest and down the California coast.

“Our much-anticipated arrival in a new market on the West Coast unlocks exciting opportunities for Vane Brothers," Vane Brothers President C. Duff Hughes said in a statement. "Now that equipment, crews, and key support staff are in place, we have a platform for continued growth in partnership with valued customers.”

Vane's current West Coast fleet operations are focused on two fronts: a ship bunkering partnership with Marathon Petroleum Corp. in Washington state’s Puget Sound, and dock-to-dock transfers for Valero Energy Corp. in an area that includes the twin ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, as well as the Port of Benicia at the head of San Francisco Bay.

“Marathon and Valero are two of the nation’s foremost petroleum refiners, and we are gratified that they have tapped Vane Brothers to support their West Coast activities,” Hughes said.

Vane's West Coast marine operations and labor relations is being headed up by Capt. Igor Loch Jr., a maritime professional with more than 40 years of industry experience both on deck and as a shore-side executive.

David Krapf has been editor of WorkBoat, the nation’s leading trade magazine for the inland and coastal waterways industry, since 1999. He is responsible for overseeing the editorial direction of the publication. Krapf has been in the publishing industry since 1987, beginning as a reporter and editor with daily and weekly newspapers in the Houston area. He also was the editor of a transportation industry daily in New Orleans before joining WorkBoat as a contributing editor in 1992. He has been covering the transportation industry since 1989, and has a degree in business administration from the State University of New York at Oswego, and also studied journalism at the University of Houston.