VESSEL REVIEW | Kolber – Crane and lock maintenance barge delivered to US Army Corps of Engineers

Photo: US Army Corps of Engineers

The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has taken delivery of a new crane barge built by Metal Trades of South Carolina.

Kolber was designed jointly by the USACE and TAI Engineers of New Orleans. The vessel honours Jonathan E. Kolber, who had worked with the USACE Buffalo District as a civil engineer for over 35 years. It replaces McCauley, an older crane barge that had served the same district since 1948.

Kolber has a length of 160 feet (48.7 metres), a beam of 60 feet (18.2 metres), and a depth of 12 feet (3.65 metres).

Photo: US Army Corps of Engineers

The crane is a SeaTrax unit whose design and construction were contracted by the USACE’s Marine Design Center. The corps said Kolber’s crane can place armour stone weighing up to 20 tons (18.1 tonnes) at a radius of 90 feet (27.4 metres), which is equivalent to lifting 10 cars all at once.

Kolber will be operated by the corps’ Buffalo District Repair Fleet. The barge’s primary duties will be maintenance repairs of the 37 miles (59.5 kilometres) of coastal navigation structures (i.e., piers, jetties, breakwaters) and removal of obstructions to navigation from the channels. Additionally, the vessel will support maintenance work at Buffalo’s Black Rock Lock, including mitre gate removal and installation for the replacement projects currently scheduled for the next two winters.

The USACE expects the new barge to serve as the Buffalo District’s floating crane for the next 40 years.

Photo: US Army Corps of Engineers
Type of vessel:Crane barge
Owner:US Army Corps of Engineers
Designer:TAI Engineers, USA
Builder:Metal Trades, USA
Length overall:160 feet (48.7 metres)
Beam:60 feet (18.2 metres)
Depth:12 feet (3.65 metres)
Operational area:New York, USA

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