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Photo by: Birk Thomas

Built in 1972, by Main Iron Works Incorporated of Houma, Louisiana (hull #264) as the Pathfinder 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.

In 1981, the Interstate Oil Transportation Company was acquired by the Southern National Resources Company of Birmingham, Alabama. The new company was named the SONAT Marine Company Incorporated of Birmingham, Alabama. Where the tug retained her name.

In 1987, the SONAT Marine Company was acquired by the the Maritrans Operating Partnership of Tampa, Florida. Where the tug retained her name. Maritrans was formed by group of managers from the SONAT Marine Company. Who offered to form a partnership to raise the funds necessary to purchase the company. These eleven partners included some individuals who had worked for the Interstate Oil Transportation Company since the 1950's.

In March of 1989, the Exxon Valdez ran aground in Prince William Sound near Valdez, Alaska. And 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, the 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 transportation 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 transportation companies emerged, and established operations in the area. They included the Bouchard Transportation Company of Melville, New York and the Vane Brothers Company of Baltimore, Maryland.

In 1994, the tug was acquired by the Dahl Tug and Barge Company of Seattle, Washington. Where she retained her name.

In 1998, she was acquired by the Milton Point Investments Company of Rye, New York. Where the tug retained her name.

In 2007, the tug was acquired by Dana Marine Services Incorporated of Theodore, Alabama. Where she retained her name.

In 2007, she was acquired by the Norfolk Tug Company of Norfolk, Virginia. Where the tug retained her name.

In 2007, the Norfolk Tug Company rebuilt the at Lyon Shipyard in Norfolk, Virginia. Where the tug underwent significant renovations including steel, internal wiring, stern fendering. This work included interior improvements, and rebuilding. The tug's main engines were torn down, and re manufactured.

In 2008, she was refitted two new fuel efficient, John Deer/Kohler generators. And her Lufkin reduction gears were rebuilt. Her shafts, and rudder where reworked. This also included the addition of an improved upper wheelhouse house that provided for 41(ft) height of eye.

Powered by two, Caterpillar D 399 S diesel engines. With Lufkin RLS4218 reduction gears, at a ratio of 6:1. Turning two, 102(in) by 86(in), stainless steel, fixed pitch propellers. For a rated 2,250 horsepower.

Her electrical service is provided by two, John Deere 4045tFM75A generator sets. The tug's capacities are 45,000 gallons of fuel, 800 gallons of lube oil, and 4,000 gallons of water.

The towing equipment consists of a single drum, Smatco towing winch. And a Smatco capstan fitted on her stern. With two, hydraulic push winches mounted on her bow. Outfitted with 1.75(in) towing wire.
(Captain Eric Takakjian, Kyle Stubbs)

  • Vessel Name: PATHFINDER
  • USCG Doc. No.: 542692
  • Vessel Service: TOWING VESSEL
  • IMO Number: 7235214
  • Trade Indicator: Coastwise Unrestricted, Registry
  • Call Sign: WDD7777
  • Hull Material: STEEL
  • Hull Number: 264
  • Ship Builder: MAIN IRON WORKS, INC.
  • Year Built: 1972
  • Length: 91.5
  • Hailing Port: NORFOLK, VA.
  • Hull Depth: 9.7
  • Hull Breadth: 26.8
  • Gross Tonnage: 186
  • Net Tonnage: 126
  • Previous Vessel Owners: