Tugs totalling 150,000hp were harnessed for the Aasta Hansteen spar platform tow (Equinor) Tugs totalling 150,000hp were harnessed for the Aasta Hansteen spar platform tow (Equinor)

In a scene reminiscent of earlier days of intense activity in the North Sea oil and gas industry, five anchor-handling tugs with a combined total of 150,000hp have completed the tow out of the Aasta Hansteen spar platform.

The 500 nautical mile journey, on behalf of Equinor (the new name of Statoil) was from Kvaerner’s Stord yard to the final location at the gas field in the Norwegian Sea. The tow-out of the 46,000t spar platform with its 24,000t previously installed topside was claimed to be the biggest such operation since the Troll A platform tow in 1996.

When Atlantic Towing’s ship-handling tug Atlantic Willow sets out for work it is now with an all-female crew, the first tug in the port of Halifax to make that claim.

Tug master Andrea MacDonald hopes the all-female crew will open the eyes of many young women to new possibilities doing what would usually be considered a man’s job. She is assisted by 23-year old chief engineer Kelsie MacLean who came up through the Sea Cadets and chose marine engineering after initially wanting to be a captain like her grandfather on his fishing boat. Twenty nine-year old Jocelyn Smith is the tug’s deckhand whose father is an engineer on another of the company’s tugs.

The keel-laying ceremony has taken place of a Robert Allan Ltd designed RAstar 3200-W for Saam Smit Canada at Turkey’s Uzmar Shipyard.

The tug is expected to become one of the most emissions-friendly vessels of its type in the world carrying Cleanship and Green Passport notations from BV and will operate for Saam Smit’s operation in British Columbia.

Svitzer has announced that Nicolai Noes is to become managing director of its Australian arm replacing Steffan Risager who will be returning to Denmark with his family.

Mr Noes brings a working knowledge of the Australian container shipping industry including experience with Maersk across a broad range of commercial disciplines in: Australia, the UK, USA, Singapore and China. He was previously managing director for Maersk Line in Australia during which time he also served as a director of Shipping Australia Limited and a period on the NSW Government’s Freight Advisory Council. He also spent time as Head of Asia Pacific Liner Operations Cluster based in Singapore.

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