Monday, August 15, 2016

New LNG Ready Jones Act Compliant Product Tanker Joins Sister Ships Delivering Fuel for US Group

Legislation Covering all Vessels from Container Carriers to General Cargo Remains Controversial However
Shipping News Feature
US – The Crowley Maritime Corporation is, quite understandably, one of the major supporters of the Jones (Merchant Shipping) Act which mandates that vessels serving the domestic maritime needs of the freight industry, no matter whether they are container ships, tankers or suited to general cargo, are built, crewed and owned by American citizens. Although often widely criticised as being a restriction on trade the Act is now just four years off its centenary and last week saw Crowley take delivery of MT West Virginia, the fourth new, Jones Act product tanker built for the company by Philly Shipyard Inc.

The new ship is being christened on the 16th August at the Philly Shipyard and will join her sister ships Louisiana, Ohio and Texas as the first-ever tankers to receive the American Bureau of Shipping’s (ABS) LNG-Ready Level 1 approval. Like its sister ships, West Virginia is based on a proven Hyundai Mipo Dockyards (HMD) design that incorporates numerous fuel efficiency features, flexible cargo capability and the latest regulatory requirements plus the ship is LNG ready, meaning it can be converted for propulsion by liquefied natural gas.

With a length overall of 600 feet at 50,000 dead-weight-tonnes (dwt) and capable of carrying 330,000 barrels of product she can transport crude oil or refined petroleum products, as well as various chemical cargoes. Marathon Petroleum Corporation is the charterer and Crowley’s Rob Grune, senior vice president and general manager, petroleum services, commented:

“The delivery of the West Virginia represents our total commitment at Crowley to providing the best performance for our customers with efficiency and innovative solutions. The completion of West Virginia and her sister ships demonstrates our belief in the Jones Act trade, and our commitment to supporting our economy through US shipbuilding and crewing. We congratulate Philly Shipyard for reaching this milestone, as well as the dedicated, hard-working men and women who build and crew these ships.”

Crowley’s dedicated marine solutions group provided construction management services for the product tankers. The company has an on-site office and personnel at the Philadelphia shipyard to ensure strong working relationships with shipyard staff and a seamless construction and delivery program. At the official handover Philly Shipyard’s President and CEO Steinar Nerbovik said:

“Today’s delivery marks the successful completion of a four tanker series for Crowley. We have appreciated a strong partnership with Crowley, stemming from the previous two Crowley tankers delivered in both 2012 and 2013, and today are proud to add these four safe and quality vessels to its growing fleet. On behalf of the men and women at the shipyard, we send our well wishes to the dedicated crew that will operate the West Virginia.”