Saturday, May 24, 2014

KUMANO Arrives; CSL NIAGARA to Depart Sunday

FEDERAL KUMANO arrived at 1615 today, and with assistance from tug NEW YORK, turned in Presque Isle Bay and docked at the Mountfort Terminal. The ship will be in port until mid-day Tuesday.

Tugs RHODE ISLAND and NEW YORK arrived in Erie around 0900 this morning to sail CSL NIAGARA from Donjon Shipbuilding and Repair. However, NIAGARA developed a problem that required an additional day to fix; RHODE ISLAND departed for Ashtabula while NEW YORK stayed behind. The tugs will be assisting the NIAGARA out of drydock at approximately 0800 Sunday if all goes well.

I will update this post with photographs of today's activity later this evening.


FEDERAL KUMANO is having a slower than expected transit of the Welland Canal and will be arriving in Erie around 1600.

CSL NIAGARA remains in drydock at this time.

Friday, May 23, 2014


MANITOWOC departed the Mountfort Terminal this morning at about 0745 and shifted to the North Pier to unload the first cargo of sand for beach replenishment. MANITOWOC departed Erie at 1245 hours bound for Fairport Harbor to load a cargo of salt.

CSL NIAGARA is currently floating in the graving dock at Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair and due to depart on Saturday.

FEDERAL KUMANO, loaded with three transformers loaded in Antwerp, Belgium, is out of Hamilton and expected to arrive Erie at 1200 on Saturday. I will update with a better arrival time in the morning.

The second load of transformers is expected to arrive on July 16 aboard FEDERAL SHIMANTO.

MANITOWOC backing away from the Mountfort Terminal.

With the boom down, MANITOWOC slows from reverse and begins to use the bow thruster to push away.


Moving away.

MANITOWOC's workboat approaches the North Pier.

The deckhands race ahead to handle the mooring lines.

Turning for the North Pier.

Approaching the pier.

MANITOWOC's captain on the bridge wing.

A pile of sand on deck.


Stern view.

Thursday, May 22, 2014


BBC XINGANG, after loading since Sunday afternoon, got underway and departed Erie at 0600 this morning bound for Mozambique with GE locomotives.

MANITOWOC arrived in Erie shortly after midnight with stone from Cedarville and spent the early morning hours unloading at the Old Ore Dock before moving to the Mountfort Terminal to load sand at around 0930. The ship will move to the North Pier at around 0900 on Friday morning to unload the first cargo for beach replenishment.

The sun rises over the buoys.

BBC XINGANG underway this morning.

Between the piers.

Close up.

Stern view.

Another view against the morning sky.

Clearing Erie for Mozambique. The vessel is open for cargos in Mozambique beginning June 25, meaning the ship will be unloaded by that date.

MANITOWOC unloading.

Another view.

Overhead view of MANITOWOC unloading at the Old Ore Dock.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


REBECCA ANN departed with WITTE 2302 this afternoon at 1550, bound for Oswego with the second of three hopper barges built for Donjon Marine by it's shipyard subsidiary.

BBC XINGANG is currently finishing cargo loading operations and expects to depart at 0600 on Thursday morning for Mozambique.

The first vessel of the year for sand replenishment will be MANITOWOC, due tonight at 2330 to unload stone. In the morning the ship will move over to Mountfort Terminal and begin loading sand for the North Pier, a process expected to take anywhere from 16-24 hours if all goes well.

BBC XINGANG loading CLN 1807 on Tuesday.

Close up.

The XINGANG is using it's own cranes to load.

Another view.

Swinging the locomotive over the side. The loading process from the beginning of the lift to securing the unit in the cargo hold takes several hours.

Loading axles later on Tuesday evening.

Monday, May 19, 2014


BBC XINGANG arrived in Erie at 1015 hours Sunday, and docked at the Mountfort Terminal to load the first batch of locomotives bound for Africa. BBC XINGANG arrived from Milwaukee, after a stop in Hamilton and then a couple of weeks in the anchorage above Port Huron awaiting a pilot. Ice conditions on the upper lakes forced the Coast Guard to stop most salties above Port Huron at the beginning of the season and the lake pilots are now working through a pilot shortage. After spending last week working cargo in Milwaukee, BBC XINGANG stopped in Erie to load before completing her first visit to the Great Lakes.

BBC XINGANG was built in 2013 at Tianjin Xingang Shipbuilding in Tianjin, China. Tianjin Xingang has built many of the BBC vessels, including seven sisterships to BBC XINGANG.

I will post a departure time when I learn of one for the BBC XINGANG.

REBECCA ANN returned to Erie this morning shortly after midnight to pick up another barge and is currently docked along the north wall of Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair.

BBC XINGANG in the channel. In the distant background, note local perch fishing boats O'DANNY'O and EDWARD JOHN.

Passing the lighthouse.

Another view of XINGANG. Photo by Gene Polaski.

Bow view of the 2013-built general cargo vessel. BBC XINGANG has two cranes, each capable of lifting up to 350 MT, for a combined lift of 700 MT.

Side view.

Passing the Coast Guard station.

Stern view of XINGANG. Photo by Gene Polaski.

BBC XINGANG's cargo awaits.

BBC XINGANG approaches the Mountfort Terminal.

Coming alongside.

Alongside the dock.

Sunday, May 18, 2014


BBC XINGANG arrived in Erie this morning at 1015 and docked at the Mountfort Terminal. The vessel began loading locomotives for Africa shortly thereafter.

REBECCA ANN is expected back for another of the barges at Donjon at around midnight,

I will post photos in the morning.

Saturday, May 17, 2014


BBC XINGANG, in ballast from Milwaukee, is expected in Erie at around noon on Sunday to load locomotives.

Friday, May 16, 2014


FEDERAL KUMANO, loaded with project cargo, is due to arrive in Erie on Saturday, May 24. The vessel, according to Fednav's FALLine schedule, will be in port until the 27th due to the Memorial Day holiday before departing for Cleveland. This will be KUMANO's first visit to Erie.

Reportedly, the first vessel to take on sand at Mountfort Terminal and shift it to the North Pier for beach replenishment will be arriving this weekend. I will update when I learn more.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

REBECCA ANN Departs with WITTE 2301

REBECCA ANN departed Donjon Shipbuilding & Repair this morning at 1015 pushing newly built hopper barge WITTE 2301. The barge was completed last fall and has been in Erie awaiting a tow to Donjon's yard in New York.

WITTE 2301 is similar to the three hopper barges built at Donjon last year for Sterling Equipment. At least three of these are being constructed; WITTE 2302 is undergoing topside painting in the West Slip and a third barge (I believe named WITTE 2303) is in the graving dock.

The Pittsburgh Tribune Review featured a long article Sunday about Donjon with a gallery of photos taken while ATLANTIC HURON was in drydock.

REBECCA ANN pushes the WITTE 2301 away from the West Slip.

Lining up for the channel.

Close up. Note WITTE 2301 is being pushed from the bow.

Close up of REBECCA ANN. The former HERBERT P. BRAKE was renamed last fall.

Side view.

Stern view of the tow.

Extra lines are run from the tug to WITTE 2301.


Monday, May 12, 2014


PRESQUE ISLE departed Erie shortly after noon on Saturday bound for Two Harbors to load.

CSL NIAGARA should be out of drydock this week.

I will post photos in the morning.

Sunday, May 11, 2014


The cofferdam on PRESQUE ISLE was removed by Lakeshore Towing yesterday afternoon and the vessel should depart sometime today.

REBECCA ANN is in port and moored on the north wall of Donjon Shipbuilding at this time.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

PRESQUE ISLE Update; Donjon Tug Expected

The cofferdam on the PRESQUE ISLE will be removed on Sunday morning and the vessel should depart sometime Sunday.

Donjon's tug REBECCA ANN, the former HERBERT P. BRAKE, will be arriving Erie overnight to pick up  WITTE 2301 from the shipyard and take it to New York.

Friday, May 9, 2014


At this time a work crew is working on reinstalling the PRESQUE ISLE's starboard propeller. If all goes well, the cofferdam will be removed tomorrow and the vessel will depart tomorrow evening or Sunday morning.

I will update as I learn more.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


This morning, a crew from Lakeshore Towing moved the company's barge 503 into the East Canal Basin to begin another day of work. Like most of the company's work, this work was designed to benefit the local boating community. Today's job, however, will have a particular impact on the local boating community.

Contracted to the Regional Science Consortium, tug LOW BIDDER and barge 503 were slated to load a new weather buoy for deployment off of Presque Isle to transmit weather data online. The data will be transmitted via cell phone and put on a website for accessibility to help boaters determine wind and wave conditions on Lake Erie. The buoy has been deployed almost in the Lake Carrier's Course, and is deployed at coordinates 42 11.141 N, 080 08.195 W. When functional the buoy will also feature a web camera.

The buoy was deployed around noon today and is now on station; it is now transmitting data.

The weather buoy arrives.

Lakeshore Towing's crew prepares the buoy for lifting from the bed of the truck.

The excavator is moved into position.

Slings are locked into place on the excavator to lift the buoy.


The buoy is skillfully set down on the barge.

Attaching the top of the buoy, with all of the transmission equipment and the radar reflector.

LOW BIDDER backs the barge away from the dock.


LOW BIDDER pushes the barge out of the East Canal basin.

USCG 45757 outbound the channel. 45757 is Station Erie's newest boat, one of the new 45-foot class of small boats being built for the Coast Guard.

Stern view. At this time it remains to be seen if this boat will replace 47241 as Erie's larger boat or if it just an additional boat for the Station.

US Customs & Border Protection Safe Boat 382907 is followed by smaller fleetmate, 332119, out of the channel.

Work on PRESQUE ISLE's starboard propeller is continuing and the vessel could potentially be departing later this week.

LOW BIDDER outbound.

Close up of the pushboat.

Stern view.