Monday, December 31, 2012


One of Lower Lakes Towing's newest acquisitions, TECUMSEH, is due in Erie tomorrow afternoon, and will be going to the West Slip. McKEE SONS will be moved across the slip to allow for TECUMSEH's arrival. TECUMSEH will spend the winter undergoing topside repairs.

The 1972-built TECUMSEH sailed on the ocean under the U.S.-flag until being purchased by Lower Lakes Towing and refit in Mexico in late 2011. At this time the vessel was brought under the Canadian flag and given its present name. The vessel has been in and out of layup all season based on cargo demands and will be departing Sarnia, Ontario, where it has been since early December, later tonight.

TECUMSEH on its first trip through the Welland Canal on April 9, 2012.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

McKEE SONS Arrives for Layup

INVINCIBLE/McKEE SONS arrived in Erie today at 1030, in ballast from Hamilton, Ontario. The duo docked at the West Slip at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair for winter layup.

McKEE SONS inbound.

Close up.

Stern view

Entering the bay.

Turning for the West Slip.

Another view.

Approaching the dock.

McKEE SONS comes alongside.

Dropping the anchor for the winter.

Monday, December 24, 2012


McKEE SONS' ETA currently reads 0830 on the ship's AIS. It's likely the ship will anchor overnight before coming in.


Tug INVINCIBLE/McKEE SONS are expected in Erie tomorrow morning for winter layup at the West Slip at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

THOMPSON Arrives; A-390 Floats from Shipyard

JOSEPH H. THOMPSON and tug JOSEPH H. THOMPSON JR. arrived in Erie this afternoon around 1230 hours and moored at the Mountfort Terminal to unload stone from Stoneport, Michigan. The THOMPSON is currently unloading at the dock.

At 0330 this morning, Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair began flooding the graving dock to float barge A-390. BARBARA ANDRIE moved into drydock this afternoon at around 1415 hours, hooked up to the barge and moved to the east side of the shipyard at around 1500 today. The duo should be departing sometime this evening.


Another view.

Passing Coast Guard Station Erie.

Close up of tug JOSEPH H. THOMPSON JR.

Stern view.

Swinging a crewman off the side for docking.

BARBARA ANDRIE laying alongside Donjon this afternoon with the THOMPSON in the distance.

Stern view.

Backing out of drydock.

Turning to dock at the east side of the shipyard.

Approaching the dock.

Sideways to drop a line on the dock.



JOSEPH H. THOMPSON/THOMPSON JR are now expected in Erie around 1200 today.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


JOSEPH H. THOMPSON/THOMPSON JR., laden with stone, are expected in Erie around 1400 on Wednesday.

Monday, November 19, 2012

A-390 Enters Drydock

At 0700 this morning, BARBARA ANDRIE backed barge A-390 out of the West Slip, and after doing a 360-degree turn in the harbor, entered the drydock at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair.

A-390 will be in the drydock for survey for the next few weeks, next to FARRELL 256. BARBARA ANDRIE, after backing out of drydock, docked at the West Slip, where it will remain while the barge is in drydock.

BARBARA ANDRIE/A-390 turning in Erie harbor.

Coming around. The tug and barge turned to back in originally before finding out that they were supposed to go in bow-first so the tug could get out of the drydock.

The tug comes forward on its engine to swing around the barge.

Turning for the drydock.

A-390 comes alongside the graving dock.

Moving forward.

Tug BARBARA ANDRIE enters the West Slip.


BARBARA ANDRIE secured at dock this afternoon.

Stern view.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


Andrie's tug BARBARA ANDRIE and barge A-390 arrived in Erie from Monroe, Michigan at 0745 this morning and docked in the West Slip alongside Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair. Early tomorrow morning the tug will dock the barge A-390 in the graving dock at the shipyard, where it will undergo its five-year survey. Tug BARBARA ANDRIE will remain in Erie, docked on the east side of the shipyard, while the barge is in drydock.

BARBARA ANDRIE/A-390 are expected to be in Erie less than a month. The duo will spend the winter trading on Lake Michigan.

BARBARA ANDRIE/A-390 inbound shortly after sunrise.

Another view.

BARBARA ANDRIE was built in 1940 at Trinity Shipyard in Beaumont, Texas for Moran Towing as EDMOND J. MORAN.

Stern view of the single-screw tug.

Stern view as the duo enters Erie harbor.

Approaching Donjon.

Approaching the dock, the tug's captain relied on a deckhand on the bow of the barge to give him his position relative to the dock. The ANDRIE's pilothouse does not provide the visibility necessary for the captain to see for himself.

BARBARA ANDRIE backs on the barge, which has a bow line secured to the dock. By backing on the line the tug brought the stern of the barge around to be secured to the dock.

At dock this afternoon.


Friday, November 16, 2012


Tug VIGILANT I arrived in Erie this morning at 0830 and docked at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair, astern of the FARRELL 256.

At 1115 the VIGILANT I entered the graving dock and turned around behind newly-completed WITTE 4004, faced up and pushed the WITTE 4004 out of the dock. The WITTE 4004 was moored on the east side of the shipyard.

VIGILANT I then moved over to the West Slip and hooked up to the FARRELL 256, moving the barge into the drydock for more repair work. The barge will be docked next to the A-390 when the Andrie barge arrives this weekend and is put into drydock.

VIGILANT I then hooked up to the WITTE 4004 and departed with the barge, bound down the Seaway for Valleyfield, where it will reportedly meet up with the tug ATLANTIC SALVOR and barge WITTE 1007 to be taken to New York City.

Also of note, the Erie Western Pennsylvania Port Authority was recently awarded a $700,000 grant to extend the rail siding at Donjon's yard.

VIGILANT I inbound Erie at 0830 this morning.

Side view.

Stern view.

Docking on the west side of Donjon's yard.

VIGILANT I moves the WITTE 4004 out of drydock.

Docking the barge on the east side of the yard.

A few minutes later, VIGILANT I's crew works with shipyard employees to moor the FARRELL 256 into drydock.

Starting to back the FARRELL 256 out of the slip. This is the barge's third trip into drydock since arriving in Erie last October.

Backing out.

Turning to line up for the drydock.

WITTE 4004 departing, powered by VIGILANT I.

Another view.

Close up. The barge is a sister to the 2007-built WITTE 4003, constructed at Erie Shipbuilding LLC.

VIGILANT I providing the power to the barge. They are currently a little less than two hours out of Port Colborne, at a speed of 6.7 knots.

Stern view.

Clearing the piers.