Steiner Shipyard, Bayou La Batre, Ala., has delivered a 76'x35'x10'8" inland river towboat to Florida Marine Transporters (FMT), Mandeville, La. The steel-hulled Kristy Dutsch was designed by Sterling Marine, Fairhope, Ala., and is the fifth boat in a six-boat series.

“Florida Marine likes the fact that we’re a smaller yard that can tailor our building methods to their needs,” said Gregory Marshall Jr., Steiner’s project manager/purchasing assistant. “They also like the fact that they can depend on quick communications between us and them.” 

In September, the WorkBoat team toured the Kristy Dutsch, which was in construction at Steiner Shipyard in Bayou La Batre, Alabama. Photo Doug Stewart.

Main propulsion comes from two Caterpillar 32B diesel engines, producing 2,000 hp each. The mains connect to twin 76"x68", 4-bladed Sound propellers through Twin Disc MG-540 marine gears.

Ship’s service power comes from two John Deere-powered 99-kW gensets. Controls are from Twin Disc, and the steering system from EMI Marine.

Capacities include 30,000 gals. of fuel; 10,000 gals. water; 800 gals. lube oil; and 800 gals. gear oil.

The towboat has a crew capacity of six, is Coast Guard-certified Subchapter M, and features a Furuno electronics suite.

The Kristy Dursch was delivered in December 2023. The sixth vessel will be delivered later this year.

Shipyard foreman Kevin Oliver said that having worked closely with FMT on the previous vessels, all the bugs had been worked out during previous builds. “This boat was fairly straight forward,” he said. 

Ken Hocke has been the senior editor of WorkBoat since 1999. He was the associate editor of WorkBoat from 1997 to 1999. Prior to that, he was the editor of the Daily Shipping Guide, a transportation daily in New Orleans. He has written for other publications including The Times-Picayune. He graduated from Louisiana State University with an arts and sciences degree, with a concentration in English, in 1978.

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