On Friday, Pascagoula, Miss.-based VT Halter Marine, a subsidiary of Vision Technologies Systems, announced new contracts to build two 130' articulated tug-barge (ATB) tugs for Bouchard Transportation.

Construction of the 130'x38'x22', 6,000hp vessels will begin in the third quarter of 2014 at VT Halter's Moss Point Marine facility in Escatawpa, Miss. The twin screw ATB tugs will be classed by ABS as A1 Ocean Towing, Dual Mode ATB, USCG Subchapter C and both will be equipped with an Intercon coupler system. Delivery is expected in January 2016 and May 2016, after which the vessels will enter into Bouchard’s fleet service in New York.

The new tugs, the Bouchard Boys and the Evening Light, will be married up to two existing Bouchard barges.

“We appreciate the continued confidence that Bouchard Transportation has in VT Halter Marine as we continue to build for the largest ATB operator in the U.S.," said Bill Skinner, CEO of VT Halter, said in a statement.