VESSEL REVIEW | Svitzer Sohar – Turkish-built compact ASD tug is the first of three for Omani port

VESSEL REVIEW | Svitzer Sohar – Turkish-built compact ASD tug is the first of three for Omani port

Photo: Rik van Marle /

Sanmar Shipyards has delivered the first of a three-vessel order of a new variant of a Robert Allan Ltd ASD tug design.

The arrival of Svitzer Sohar to the Port of Sohar, alongside its two sisters due shortly, will conclude the fleet development aims of the operator, Svitzer, and the Port of Sohar, agreed as part of the 15-year renewal of the former’s marine services contract, awarded in early 2019.

The tugs have been designed and built to ABS rules with the notation ✠A1, ✠AMS, ✠ABCU, Towing Vessel, Escort, Fi-Fi 1, QR, IHM, Unrestricted Service, UWILD.

The series was developed as a compact tug model aimed at ensuring efficient construction while still meeting the customisation requirements of specific clients. The design has a sponsoned hull form designed to provide significantly enhanced escort towing and seakeeping performance.

Ship handling fenders at the bow consists of a 900- by 500mm cylindrical fender with 480- by 300mm “W” block fendering below. A 300- by 300mm hollow “D” fender provides protection at the main deck sheer line and along the knuckle, and 480- by 300mm “W” block fendering is used at the stern.

Svitzer Sohar, measuring 29.4 metres in length with a moulded beam of 13.3 metres and an overall draught of 6.0 metres, is powered by a pair of Caterpillar 3516C main engines, each delivering 2,525 kW, coupled to Kongsberg US255FP azimuth thrusters for a mighty 80-tonne plus bollard pull.

As well as towage, the other services the tugs will be required to provide include fire-fighting, pollution response support, and salvage operations within the port.

A comprehensive towing capability is ensured with DMT supplying a high performance escort towing winch forward. A Data anchor windlass and Palfinger deck crane are also included in the deck equipment list while FFS provided a main engine-driven external firefighting system meeting FiFi1 notation via two forward bridge deck monitors.

The vessel’s accommodations are compliant with MLC standards for a normal operating crew of up to eight personnel. The master and chief engineer cabins are located on the main deck with three double crew cabins located in the lower accommodations. All cabins are en-suite, and with the area of operation in mind, a comprehensive HVAC system is included throughout the accommodation and wheelhouse areas.

The size and power of the tugs matches nicely with the Valemax vessels regularly calling at Sohar, allowing for a higher margin of safety.

For more news, features and vessel reviews as part of this week’s Tug and Salvage Week, please click here

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