On July 30 Callan Marine of Galveston, Texas announced that a fifth cutter suction dredge (CSD), the General Bradley, will be added to the company’s fleet next year. The new dredge is a 28”, 341-foot long, diesel electric powered CSD with three ABC 12DCZ engines providing 9,260 total installed horsepower on board. Construction is already underway at Halimar Shipyard in Morgan City, LA, and the dredge is anticipated to begin work in early 2021.
“The General Bradley is a demonstration of our commitment to capital improvement projects along the Gulf Coast Region,” stated Maxie McGuire, President of Callan Marine. “The General Bradley will transcend our ‘middle market’ offering and truly be a difference-maker in large river and ship channel dredging.”
Yesterday’s announcement comes on the heels of Callan Marine’s launching of a new 32” ocean-going CSD, the General MacArthur, now working on her first job expanding shipping infrastructure in Texas.
“These two new Callan Marine dredges add significant capacity to the rapidly growing U.S.-flag fleet” said Mark Sickles, Interim CEO and Executive Director of the Dredging Contractors of America. “Investment decisions of this magnitude are not made overnight but are well considered decisions to compete in the growing navigation, shore protection and coastal restoration markets with state-of-the-art, modern U.S. vessels—vessels built in U.S. shipyards, owned by and crewed by U.S. citizens.”
“As we passed along to customers over the years, investor confidence in the market would grow with sustainable and predictable investment in our nation’s infrastructure,” said Ancil Taylor, Executive Vice President at Callan Marine. “These customers have delivered sustainable resources, and industry is building to meet the anticipated market demand.”
On a final note, Sickles reminds industry’s valued customers that “the dredging industry is in the middle of an exciting building boom that is supporting hundreds of family wage jobs in an economy that is struggling due to Covid-19. We want policy-makers to know that our companies do not take our status as an ‘essential industry’ for granted. We are doing all we can to keep our employees and their families safe during this challenging time.”
Since 2012, the dredging industry has added seven major cutter suction dredges (CSD) to the market. With yesterday’s announcement, there are now two more known large CSDs on the way. A CSD pumps sediment directly to an area to be filled, frequently for coastal restoration or storm protection purposes and comprises about 60 percent of all dredging by volume. Expectations are that more announcements are forthcoming.
Hopper dredging constitutes more than 30 percent of all dredging. Hopper dredges are self-propelled ships that primarily work in the ocean environment, either maintaining ocean entrance channels to the Nation’s seaports, or providing beach quality sand for shore protection purposes. Two large hopper dredges were added to the U.S.-flag fleet in 2018 representing a 35 percent overall capacity increase based on hopper size. Recently, the construction of two more large hopper dredges was announced, adding 17 percent more by 2023. There are expectations that more announcements are forthcoming in the hopper segment as well.