Based on the RAsalvor 4400-DFM design from Canadian naval architects Robert Allan Ltd, the two revolutionary new tugs will service Canada’s Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMEP), escorting tankers from the harbour limits of the Port of Vancouver to the open Pacific Ocean through the commercial shipping lanes of the Salish Sea.

The service will be provided by Kotug Canada, and the unique tugs will be the first that Sanmar has built for Netherlands-headquartered international operator. The contract was won after a rigorous and competitive process.

Kotug has partnered with Sc’ianew First Nation from Beecher Bay, which is strategically located along the shipping route from Vancouver, to provide the service, and the tugs being built at Sanmar’s state-of-the-art purpose-built shipyards in Turkiye will be called SD AISEMAHT and SD QWII-AAN'C SARAH in honour of the Sc’ianew First Nation.

Scheduled to enter service in 2025, they will be the most powerful escort tugs in Canada, capable of achieving a massive 120 tonnes of bollard pull, while also providing significant environmental benefits, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and underwater radiated noise - protecting the Salish Sea’s resident Killer Whales.

Ipek Gurun, Corporate Strategy Director Sanmar Shipyards, said: “This is another milestone in our journey to a more environmentally-friendly tug and towing industry where protecting our planet is at the centre of all we do. This project is also another example of our strategy of achieving our green goals through innovation, alternative fuels, and technological advance.”