Aker Delivers New SIU-Crewed Tanker

 

November 2015

 

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New jobs for Seafarers have been delivered and more are on the way, thanks to a four-ship program involving Aker Philadelphia Shipyard and Crowley Maritime Corp.

 

The Seafarers-contracted tanker Ohio – the first vessel in the new-build program – was delivered to Crowley in late September. Earlier in the month, the keel was laid for the fourth tanker.

 

In a news release, Crowley described the Ohio’s delivery as “momentous not only for Crowley, but also for the industry because it signifies the first time a product tanker has been constructed with consideration for the future use of LNG for propulsion. The remaining three product tankers being built by [Aker Philadelphia] for Crowley are currently under construction and have planned deliveries through 2016.”

 

“We are excited to offer our customers cutting-edge technology available in these new tankers, which not only embraces operational excellence and top safety, but also offers the potential to be powered by environmentally friendly LNG in the future,” said Crowley’s Rob Grune, senior vice president and general manager, petroleum and chemical transportation. “Adding these new Jones Act tankers to our fleet allows us to continue providing our customers with diverse and modern equipment to transport their petroleum and chemical products in a safe and reliable manner.”

 

The new 50,000 dwt product tankers are based on a proven Hyundai Mipo Dockyards (HMD) design which incorporates numerous fuel efficiency features, flexible cargo capability, and the latest regulatory requirements. The Ohio is 600 feet long and is capable of carrying crude oil or refined petroleum products; the same will be true of its sister ship.

 

Meanwhile, the shipyard (a union facility) hosted the keel-laying ceremony a week and half before the Ohio’s delivery. Keeping with long-held shipbuilding tradition, coins were placed on one of the keel blocks before the unit was lowered into place in the dry dock.

 

Representatives from the yard and Crowley were in attendance to place the coins and sign the keel block as a gesture of good fortune and safe travels. On behalf of Aker Philadelphia Shipyard, upcoming graduates of the shipyard’s apprenticeship program placed the ceremonial coins. Initiated in 2004, the three-year apprenticeship program develops the next generation of Aker Philadelphia Shipyard employees. The upcoming graduation class will add 24 skilled shipbuilders to the workforce, bringing the shipyard’s apprentices to about 10 percent of its current workforce.

 

Since the program’s inception, 17 apprentices have moved into management positions and many have obtained additional manufacturing qualifications. The shipyard plans to hire 50 additional apprentices in 2016.

 

Aker Philadelphia has delivered 20 ships (most of them SIU-crewed) in its 15-year history.

 

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