When Are Escort Tugs Needed?


When do you need an escort tug? This may sound like a simple question, but the answer is not always so cut and dry. Escort tugs play many different roles in marine safety, so it is important to better understand all of the potential reasons you should be using one for your shipping company. Considering there is no universal solution for working with an escort tug, what do you need to know about this process and when it is right for you? Here are some things to consider.

Minimize spills

An escort tug has one specific job: to ensure a tanker ship doesn’t become compromised, stuck, or grounded. Often tugs are used in confined spaces where large ships can fit, but may not be able to navigate easily. When a tanker ship is compromised, the resulting spill has the potential to be environmentally devastating. By using an escort tug, the shipping company can minimize this risk.

Increase safety

While spills are the topic that has caused the recent interest in escort tugs, there are many other safety concerns when it comes to maneuvering a large ship into a tight area. These risks can be eliminated or greatly reduced by utilizing a more maneuverable escort tug to help with the transportation. Increased safety means better quality ships, fewer repairs, and overall safe conditions for your ship workers.

Features of escort tugs

There isn’t a lot of diversity in the escort tug market, but the most important aspect is safe maneuverability. Many people not familiar with the shipping industry might be more familiar with the escort vehicles used for transporting wide loads on the highway. These vehicles alert others to the presence of the large load, help keep the area surrounding the load safe at highway speeds, and provide a steady object for the transport vehicle to follow. A successful escort tug should also include these features in the shipping arena.

Ship traffic consideration

Experts believe that there is no universal tug design that will work for all ships in all situations. Most importantly, the escort tug will allow larger ships to function within ship traffic in a way that keeps safety and damage control in mind. Shipping companies should consider all of their specific needs, and the needs of the area where their ships are being transported, when deciding on an escort tug.

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