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Two new tugs due in EL port within weeks

Home Government & Municipal Two new tugs due in EL port within weeks

THE division of Transnet responsible for the safe, effective and efficient economic functioning of the national port system, Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA), has taken delivery of the first four tugboats to boost marine fleet availability and shipping efficiencies at the ports of Durban and East London. TNPA said this is in line with Transnet’s focus on operational efficiency through the acquisition of reliable and fit-for-purpose equipment.

This delivery is part of TNPA’s R1 billion investment in acquiring seven tugboats. These tugs will replace marine craft that have reached their operational lifespans. With the latest delivery, the Port of Durban has been allocated two tugs with the Port of East London receiving the other two. The phased delivery of the remaining three tugs will be completed by August 2024.

The tugboats, built by Damen Shipyards Cape Town, have a 60-ton bollard pull, which is an improvement on the current 32 and 40-ton bollard pull capacity of the existing tugboats.
Last Wednesday, TNPA said that the fleet had docked at the Port of Durban’s drydock to undergo technical tests for three weeks. Upon completion, TNPA will hold a ceremony to launch, name and christen the tugboats – an old marine tradition believed to bring good luck to the vessel and those who sail in it.

The arrival of the tugboats brings TNPA a step closer towards the execution of its marine fleet renewal programme, which entails replacing marine fleet with the latest technology to extend the lifespan of marine assets. The move also adds value to the timely implementation of Transnet’s broader Recovery Plan aimed at improving the availability and reliability of critical equipment.

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