Atlantic Towing Limited and Svitzer Modernise Halifax Port Fleet with New Escort Tugboats

Halifax, NS 18 June 2024 Atlantic Towing Limited, a member of the J.D. Irving, Limited family of companies and Svitzer have made a significant joint investment in the modernisation of the Port of Halifax fleet by acquiring two new escort tugboats from the Rastar 3200 series, each boasting an 85-ton bollard pull.

The Port of Halifax has seen substantial growth over the past decade, with a marked increase in both the number of tug jobs and the size of vessels. The new tugboats were specifically selected to accommodate the expanded volume and ensure Atlantic Towing maintains its role as the premier operator at the port.

Currently, three tugs are permanently stationed in Halifax, supplemented by two on-call vessels. The new Rastar 3200 vessels will replace the on-call tugs, offering a more robust and permanent solution.

Atlantic Towing, based in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, has been serving the Port of Halifax for nearly 20 years and has partnered with Svitzer, headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark, since 2010. The two new tugboats are currently under construction at the Uzmar Shipyard and are expected to be operational later this year.

Sheldon Lace, General Manager, Atlantic Towing Limited, said: “We’re excited to welcome new escort tugboats to our fleet. The investment reflects our dedication to supporting our partners and customers amid the exceptional growth in the Port of Halifax.” 

Highlighting the operational benefits, Captain Adam Parsons, Harbour Master, Halifax Port Authority, said: “These new tugs are built to handle larger container ships, which are increasingly calling at Halifax, the only Eastern Canadian port capable of accommodating them. The enhanced escort capabilities in various weather conditions will boost efficiency and safety at the port.” 

Arjen Van Dijk, Managing Director Svitzer Americas, said: "Through a collaborative effort, Svitzer's newbuild team, along with operations and procurement departments in Copenhagen and Panama, worked closely with Atlantic Towing to identify the best technical and operational solutions. These 85-ton escort tugs from the Rastar 3200 series exemplify our commitment to co-creating effective solutions with partners.” 


Notes to editors 

About Atlantic Towing 

Headquartered in Saint John, New Brunswick, and with offices in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Victoria, British Columbia, and Point Fortin, Trinidad and Tobago, Atlantic Towing Limited specializes in the provision of diverse marine services including port tug services, coastal towing, offshore oil and gas exploration, and product support. 

Its world class vessels are equipped with state-of-the-art technology and experienced, versatile crews. Both crewmembers and land-based personnel operate with safety, quality of service and teamwork top of mind. The company is Green Marine certified. Atlantic Towing is a member of the J.D. Irving, Limited family of companies. 

About Svitzer  

Svitzer is a leading, global towage and marine services provider. The core business is to assist large seaborne vessels in manoeuvring in and out of ports and terminals to berth and unberth. With more than 450 vessels, Svitzer’s services play a crucial role as part of critical port infrastructure. Svitzer was founded in 1833 and serves approximately 2,000 customers in more than 140 ports and 40 terminals across 37 countries. Read more on 

For further information, please contact:  

Anne McInerney 

Atlantic Towing Communications 
Vice-President Communications 
T: +1-506-651-9092 

Anders Crillesen 

Svitzer Communications 

T: +45 277 912 86