Multraship’s portfolio includes salvage, offshore contracts, support services such as fire-fighting and crew transfer tasks. For the latter, Multraship’s fleet contains a Damen Stan Tender 1905 – Multraship Responder.
“We use the Multraship Responder on a crew transfer contract. It’s a purpose-built vessel with modifications to the accommodation and rescue capabilities,” says Leendert Muller, Multraship’s managing director.
The transfer services are for a joint venture dredging company operating on the Western Scheldt River. “The dredging works are from the entrance to the North Sea to the Port of Antwerp.”
The complexity of conditions on the river ensure the vessel is far more than a glorified water taxi. Providing a comfortable seating plan for its twelve passengers is just not enough.
At 95km, the river is long. “The distance to the transfer point can be up to 15 miles so it is good to be fast because time is money,” says Leendert referring to the Stan Tender’s maximum speed just shy of 30 knots.
The second point is that the Western Scheldt is a dynamic estuarine environment with a large tidal range. Currents are strong and exposed low tide sand banks are plentiful.
“This is a tough environment with very changeable sea states. When the wind and the currents work against each other this can form quite large waves with short wavelengths.
You need a strong vessel that can cope with this working environment. The Stan Tender 1905 has the advantage of a strong steel hull.”
Furthermore, not only is the Western Scheldt one of the busiest shipping routes in the world with 150,000 ship movements per year, it also takes a notably meandering route.
At one point, the largest container vessels on their way to and from Antwerp have to negotiate a bend with a historically treacherous acute angled bend.
“It is a busy river, but it is also our home area,” adds Leendert. Multraship is headquartered in Terneuzen, roughly halfway along the length. “Our crews know the area well, allowing us to provide an excellent service.”
Damen Stan Tenders are a no-nonsense straightforward vessels that do what they’re supposed to do. With up to ten persons on board, at speeds of up to 19 knots, the vessels can cover up to 165 nautical miles.More information