In June 2019 Damen Shipyards Group presented its new design of Shoalbuster tug to the maritime market during the Seawork Marine and Workboat Exhibition in Southampton.
Damen has developed the new 27m x 11m vessel in response to recent Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) changes concerning crew accommodation capacity.
Damen introduced the first Shoalbuster 25 years ago with a view to combine the bollard pull of a Tug with the shallow draught of a Multi Cat.
While the owners of the first few vessels operated in the dredging industry, the benefits of its design were quickly seen by companies working on all sorts of harbour, coastal area and shallow water contracts.
The range of Damen Shoalbusters gained a reputation for being the Swiss Army knife of workboats, capable of a vast range of tasks with a wide variety of optional on-board equipment.
Moreover, the Shoalbuster is classified for unrestricted navigation, enabling clients to operate on a truly global scale.
A important fact for maritime operators is that, over the previous quarter century, Damen has continuously fine-tuned the Shoalbuster’s design in response to market requirements and regulations.
This has resulted in the Pushbuster, the Renewables Services Vessel and a specialised shallow draught version, to mention a few examples.
The new Shoalbuster (SBu) 2711 represents this another step in this evolution of design; this time to offer operators a means to comply with new MLC regulations that stipulate increased accommodation capacity.
By increasing the width of the SBu 2709 (with accommodation for six people) by two metres, Damen has achieved accommodation for seven people with the new vessel.