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GULF LIGHTINING
Pictured as: the Natoma (Sause Brothers) Photo by: Phil Gilston

Built in 1976, by Service Machine and Shipbuilding Company of Amelia, Louisiana (hull #116) as the Capt. John for the Fonteneau and Smith Boat Company of Morgan City, Louisiana.

In 1978, the Fonteneau and Smith Boat Company was acquired by Newpark Marine Services Incorporated of The Woodlands, Texas. Where the tug was renamed as the Newpark Sun God.

In 1983, she was acquired by the Gulf Fleet Marine Corporation, of Houston, Texas. Where the tug was renamed as the Gulf Lightning.

In 1985, Zapata Marine Service, Gulf Fleet Marine Incorporated, and Jackson Marine Services merged to form Zapata Gulf Marine Service Incorporated of Houston, Texas. Where the tug retained her name.

In 1991, the tug was acquired by the Sause Brothers Ocean Towing Company of Portland, Oregon. Where she was renamed as the Natoma.

Rebuilt in 1991, at Southern Oregon Marine Incorporated of Coos Bay, Oregon. The shipyard is a division of the Sause Brothers Ocean Towing Company of Portland, Oregon. She is powered by two EMD 16-645-E5 diesel engines. With Reintjes WAV 3400 reduction gears, at a ratio 5.05:1. Turning two, four bladed, 138(in) by 94(in), right and left, inboard turning, fixed pitch, propellers. For a rated 5,700 horsepower.

Her electrical service is provided by two, John Deere 6068-75 diesel engines. With Marathon generator ends. The tug's capacities are 150,000 gallons of fuel, 1,400 gallons of lube oil, and 12,000 gallons of water.

The towing gear consists of an INTERcon, double drum, DD 225 towing winch. Outfitted with 5,000(ft) of 2.25(in) towing wire on the primary drum. And, 2,400(ft) of 2.25(in) towing wire on the secondary drum. Powered by a single, GM 6-71 diesel engine. With Allison 5631, three speed, transmission.

With a 30 horsepower, electric and hydraulic, McElroy MSW-AW 528H, windlass, with two gypsy heads.
(Bruce Fizell, Captain Eric Takakjian, Captain Dave Miner, Jason Purkey, Kyle Stubbs)


  • Vessel Name: GULF LIGHTINING
  • USCG Doc. No.: 5717520
  • Vessel Service: TOWING VESSEL
  • IMO Number: 74204550
  • Trade Indicator: Coastwise Unrestricted, Registry
  • Call Sign: WBB5799
  • Hull Material: STEEL
  • Hull Number: 116
  • Ship Builder: Service Machine and Shipbuilding Corp.
  • Year Built: 1976
  • Length: 127.7
  • Hailing Port: PORTLAND, OR.
  • Hull Depth: 16.7
  • Hull Breadth: 34.8
  • Gross Tonnage: 163
  • Net Tonnage: 111
  • Owner:
    SAUSE BROS INC
    3710 NW FRONT AVENUE
    PORTLAND, OR 97210
  • Previous Vessel Names:
    CAPT.JOHN, NEWPARK SUN GOD, GULF LIGHTNING
  • Previous Vessel Owners:
    F&S Boat Corp., Newpark Marine Services Inc., Gulf Fleet Marine Corp., Zapata Gulf Marine Inc., SAUSE BROS INC, SAUSE BROS INC, SAUSE BROS INC, SAUSE BROS INC