Web alert: Interim Rule published regarding double hull tanker escorts in Prince William Sound, Alaska

News & Insights 20 August 2013


The Coast Guard has published an interim rule regarding the escort requirements for certain tankers operating on the waters of Prince William Sound (PWS), Alaska

The Coast Guard has published an interim rule regarding the escort requirements for certain tankers operating on the waters of Prince William Sound (PWS), Alaska. The rule implements legislation which mandates two tug escorts for double hull tankers over 5,000 gross tons transporting oil in bulk in PWS. The requirement of two escort vessels has contributed to a reduction in spill incidents because the escort vessels are immediately available to influence the tanker’s speed and course in the event of a steering or propulsion equipment failure, thereby reducing the possibility of a grounding, allision or collision. At present, two tug escorts of both single and double hull tankers is the industry practice being employed on the waters of PWS. The Coast Guard states the interim rule will codify current industry practice. The interim rule is effective September 18, 2013.

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