KotugSmit assisted the float-off process of Western
Isles from the heavy-lift transport ship and the transport to the shipyard KeppelVerolme. The tugs also supported the drydocking
and undocking process at the shipyard.
Western Isles had been transported from a Cosco construction centre in China to
the Netherlands for a final outfitting at the KeppelVerolme Shipyard.
A KotugSmit tow master was responsible for the
co-ordination between the tugs during this special project. Prior to the start
of operations, pre-meetings were held between representatives of the owners of
the FPSO, Cosco, Rotterdam pilots, the dock master and port captain. All
aspects of the float-off, transit to the yard and docking operations were
discussed and planned.
This provided an overview of the required
preparations, the actual operation and outlined responsibilities,
communications and operation restrictions. One of the restrictions was the
weather conditions. Due to the critical nature of the operations, weather
forecasts were required for evaluating the predicted conditions.
FPSO vessel Western Isles has been fully-fitted, it will be transferred to the
northern sector of the UK side of the North Sea for the Western Isles oil and
gas project. The
vessel, which has a storage capacity of up to 400,000 barrels of oil, will be
used by Dana Petroleum, a UK North Sea operator, to produce oil from the two
fields called Harris and Barra located some 160 kilometres east of the Shetland