Crowley has ordered two LNG-powered ships that will each carry up to 2,400 20-foot-equivalent units of containers and nearly 400 vehicles to replace triple-deck towed barges in the carrier’s U.S. mainland-Puerto Rico service.
The ships are scheduled for delivery in the second and fourth quarter of 2017. They will replace triple-deck barges that the company has operated since the early 1970s.
VT Halter Marine of Pascagoula, Miss., will build the vessels, designed by Warstila Ship Design and Crowley’s Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering firm, Jensen Maritime.
The ships will have top speeds of 22 knots and will carry containers ranging in size from 20-footers to 53-foot long, 102 inch wide units, along with vehicles in enclosed stowage spaces. They will be 219.5 meters (about 720 feet) long, with a beam of 32.3 meters and a draft of 10.0 meters. Approximate deadweight capacity will be 26,500 metric tons.
Crowley designated the new ships as its Commitment Class because “they represent our commitment to our customers and the people of Puerto Rico,” said Crowley CEO Tom Crowley in a written statement. He noted that the ships will feature reduced emissions, advanced ballast water management and alternative fuel selection, and said they represent a commitment to the U.S. maritime industry and Jones Act.
This is Crowley’s latest in a series of investments in LNG-fueled ships by Jones Act carriers. TOTE and Matson have ordered LNG-powered ships for their Puerto Rico and Hawaii services. Horizon Lines also plans to convert two 33-year-old vessels from steam to LNG power.