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KARA SEA
Photo courtesy of: Robert Mattsson

Built in 1974, by Main Iron Works of Houma, Louisiana (hull #293) as the Voyager II for the Interstate Oil Transportation Company of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

At the time, the Interstate Oil Transportation Company operated two fleets. Their Northeast Fleet, which was referred to as the "Green Fleet." Operated in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. And their Southern Fleet, which was referred to as the "White fleet" which operated out of Tampa, Florida.

However, over the years many changes came to Interstate Oil, when a company called Southern National Resources (also known as SONAT Marine) acquired Interstate Oil Transportation. Eventually a group of managers at SONAT Marine offered to form a partnership to raise the funds necessary to purchase the SONAT Marine subsidiary. These eleven partners included some who had worked for IOT since the 1950's. On April 14th, 1987, Maritrans Partners of Tampa, Florida was formed. And, assumed control of SONAT's tug and barge operations in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Tampa, Florida.

However, in March of 1989. The Exxon Valdez ran aground in Prince William Sound near Valdez, Alaska. In 1990, the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 was passed calling for the double hulling of all petroleum carrying vessels by January 1st of 2015. As well, as other stipulations that effected Maritrans including manning, preparedness and spill prevention. Maritrans filed suit to fight the stipulations set fourth by OPA '90.

By the mid 1990's Maritrans operating partners had begun to consolidate its business. By first, backing out of the black oil trade and carrying only petroleum products and petrochemicals. The phosphate trade and local transport in Baltimore, Maryland that was part of the Harbor Towing subsidiary did not fit into Maritrans's new business model. As Maritrans backed out local companies established operations in the area. They included Bouchard Transportation of Melville, New York and Vane Brothers of Baltimore, Maryland.

In 1998, the tug was acquired by the K-Sea Transportation Partnership of East Brunswick, New Jersey. Where she was renamed as the Kara Sea.

In 2002, the tug was outfitted with a JAK-400 coupler system. The Kara Sea marked one of the first installations of the JAK coupler system, completed on an American vessel. The converted tug was "married" to the barge Spring Creek. Which had been modified alongside the tug.

In 2011, the unit was acquired by Logistica Maritima of Cartagena De Indias, Columbia. Where the tug and the barge retained their names.

She was a twin screw tug, rated at 3,520 horsepower.
(Captain Eric Takakjian, Robert Mattsson)


  • Vessel Name: KARA SEA
  • USCG Doc. No.: 556625
  • Vessel Service: TOWING VESSEL
  • IMO Number: 7391006
  • Trade Indicator: Coastwise Unrestricted, Registry
  • Call Sign: YYV2832
  • Hull Material: STEEL
  • Hull Number: 293
  • Ship Builder: MAIN IRON WORKS, INC.
  • Year Built: 1974
  • Length: 99.5
  • Hailing Port: Panama
  • Hull Depth: 12
  • Hull Breadth: 32
  • Gross Tonnage: 193
  • Net Tonnage: 131
  • Owner:
    LOGISTICA MARITIMA SAS
    Zona Franca Cartagena
    Carretera a Mamonal
    13 Cartagena de Indias, Colombia
  • Previous Vessel Names:
    VOYAGER II, KARA SEA
  • Previous Vessel Owners:
    Interstate Oil Transportation Co., SONAT Marine Co., Maritrans Operating Partners,K-SEA OPERATING PARTNERSHIP LP, K-SEA TRANSPORTATION LLC, K-SEA OPERATING PARTNERSHIP L P, K-SEA OPERATING PARTNERSHIP LP