Philly Shipyard in late January announced that it has started construction on the first product tanker in a four-vessel order for American Petroleum Tankers (APT), a subsidiary of Kinder Morgan. All four of these Jones Act-eligible ships will carry SIU mariners.
“These new ships will be a great addition to the SIU fleet,” said SIU Vice President Contracts George Tricker. “Philly Shipyard, which is a union facility, produces some of the finest Jones Act vessels in the nation, and I know the SIU crews will do outstanding work aboard these cutting-edge tankers.”
Each 600-foot long vessel will be able to transport 50,000 tons of crude oil or refined petroleum products. The four vessels are expected to be delivered beginning later this year and in 2017, at which times they will be entered into the Jones Act trade. The Jones Act is a vital maritime law that pumps billions of dollars into the U.S. economy while helping sustain nearly 500,000 American jobs.
Steinar Nerbovik, Philly Shipyard’s president and CEO, remarked on Jan. 27, “Today marks our twenty-fifth keel laying celebration and I couldn’t be more proud of the 1,200 men and women of Philly Shipyard for their unyielding pride and passion that continues to bring all of our vessels to life.”
Keeping with long held shipbuilding tradition, coins were placed on one of the keel blocks before the 650-ton unit was lowered into place in the dry dock. Representatives and guests from Philly Shipyard, Kinder Morgan and the United States Coast Guard were in attendance to place the coins as a sign of good fortune and safe travels.
“This is an exciting day for Kinder Morgan. We look forward to taking delivery of this state-of-theart vessel at the end of 2016,” said Robert Kurz, vice president of Kinder Morgan Terminals and president of APT.
The Tier II vessels are based on a Hyundai Mipo Dockyards design, which incorporates numerous fuel efficiency features, flexible cargo capability and the latest regulatory requirements, according to Philly Shipyard. The vessels will be constructed with consideration for the use of LNG for propulsion in the future.
Philly Shipyard is also building two 50,000 dwt product tankers for SIU-contracted Crowley Maritime Corp. with planned deliveries during 2016, as well as two 3,600 TEU containerships – also to be crewed by Seafarers – for Matson Navigation with planned deliveries in 2018.
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