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Crowley to Add to Its Fleet of Double-Hulled Barges in Western Alaska


ANCHORAGE – Crowley today announced its plans to construct two double-hulled, combination deck cargo and tank barges for service in Western Alaska. The vessels, fittingly named DBL 165 -1 and DBL 165-2, are scheduled to be delivered in April and May of 2011, and will be home ported in Nome. The double-hull barges will be used for shallow draft operations and beach landings for the delivery of fuel and cargo to the remote communities of Western Alaska.

The company is bringing the safer double-hull vessels to Alaska without any regulatory requirement because, as Crowley’s Vice President of Alaska Operations, Craig Tornga, puts it, “It’s just the right thing to do.”

“Our reputation rests on our service to Western Alaska and along the Arctic Coast, and we’re making the commitment to protect Alaska’s environment by choosing to build double-hull barges versus single hulls.”

There is no federal or state requirement that Crowley use double hulls for barges less than 5,000 gross tons. “This is a good demonstration of our commitment to moving petroleum and petroleum products efficiently and safely,” Tornga said.

DBL 165-1 and DBL 165-2 will be the second and third double-hull barges in Crowley’s small barge fleet used for shallow water and beaching operations. In 2005, Crowley built the first double-hull barge, Barge 180-1, and is currently the only operator using a double hull for beaching operations.

The hull was rigorously designed for use in Alaska, with the highest priority given for the safety of the personnel and the environment. Adding to the double-hull feature, the barges will be fit with Tier II pumps and generators, electric winches and deck machinery to lessen the potential of hydraulic oil spills. The vessels are classed by the American Bureau of Shipping and certified by the U.S. Coast Guard for the carriage of Grade A petroleum products.

The completed sister barges will have a length of 165 feet and a breadth of 52 feet. Total tank capacity is 272,270 gallons, with the ability to achieve a draft of less than four feet while carrying approximately 90,000 gallons of product. The barges are designed to allow loading by a portable bow ramp and fixed crane, and can accommodate deck loading of 3,000 pounds per square foot.

Crowley plans to retire some older single-hull fuel and freight vessels in Crowley’s Alaska transportation line with the delivery of the DBL 165-1 and DBL 165-2. Dakota Creek Industries, in Anacortes, Wash., is building the barges, and Crowley’s Jensen Maritime is providing the engineering support to the shipyard for the final detailed design.

Since 1953, Crowley has provided various marine, petroleum distribution and energy support services in Alaska – from the North Slope to Southcentral Alaska and both coastal and inland communities including those along the Kuskokwim and Yukon Rivers. With more than 650 employees, the company has consistently provided solutions to Alaska's logistics and marine transportation challenges and is committed to providing transportation, distribution and sales of petroleum products to more than 280 communities across Alaska.

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