The South African Navy has received its second Damen ATD Tug 2909 at the naval base in Simon’s Town.
The ATD Tug 2909, named Inyathi, is the second of two vessels to be delivered as a part of a two vessel replacement contract awarded to Damen Shipyards Cape Town (DSCT).
The first ATD Tug, christened as Imvubu, was delivered in July 2015.
The Damen-built tugs are set to replace two existing harbour and coastal tugs, De Neys and De Mist.
The vessels will be engaged to perform a range of functions, including towing, mooring and fire-fighting operations for the South African Navy’s current and future fleet of vessels under all weather conditions, hostile sea, and during minimum visibility, on a day and night basis.
The two new tugs will operate within the geographical boundary of Southern African ports and in coastal waters, and will join two Damen Stan Tugs that were delivered in 2006 by DSCT.
The 29.13m-long vessels are modelled on Royal Navy design, are fitted with a bollard pull of 43t, and have a beam of 9.98m. They can achieve a speed of 13.2k.
The design is said to provide the vessels with maneuverability, high indirect towing forces and stability.
Construction of the vessels was carried out in South African shipyards, making use of local manpower, which subsequently generated local job opportunities.
DSCT chairman Sam Montsi said: "We are proud that the local content in the two Damen ATD Tug 2909 tugs amounts to over 50%.
"The construction of these two vessels has also contributed to South African skills development and job creation through Damen Shipyards Cape Town’s apprenticeship programme."
In January 2015, Damen completed construction of two FCS 5009 patrol vessels in South Africa, which is currently operational with the Cape Verdean Coast Guard.
Image: Damen’s ATD Tug 2909 Inyathi. Photo: courtesy of Damen Shipyards Group.