Optimising BHP fleet in Port Hedland with proven Rotor Tug Technology

Rotterdam, 21 October 2021

KOTUG’s new build Rotortugs RT Imperieuse and RT Clerke arrived in Port Hedland, Australia. Both vessels, chartered to BHP for the long term, will further optimize the fleet of mining group BHP to support their bulk carrier loadings at Port Hedland.

Both 32m ART80-32 tugs, built at Cheoy Lee Shipyard, have three Caterpillar main engines, that deliver a total output of 5,295kW each, 13 knots sailing speed, and 80 tons bollard pull power. Both Rotortugs are equipped with advanced DMT Escort Winches. With these two new state-of-the-art Rotortugs, the total number of Rotortugs deployed by BHP is eight.

Imperieuse & Clerke

The names of these Rotortugs are derived from Clerke Reef and Imperieuse Reef, two of the three stunning reefs that form coral atolls in the Rowley Shoals Marine Park, 300 kilometres west of Broome. The names were chosen by BHP in honour of the amazing marine life and the breathtaking scenery of the Park.


“We are very pleased that BHP, our partner for more than 12 years, once again put their trust in KOTUG’s ART 80-32 in a long-term contract. The vessel is a perfect fit for assisting the world’s largest, heavily loaded vessels in the Pilbara region,” says Ard-Jan Kooren, President & CEO of KOTUG International.

RT Clerke – Click here to see the RT Clerke in action.

RT Imperieuse


KOTUG is a leading maritime company, offering its innovative towage and maritime related services on a global scale. Adding value by sustainability-focused innovations, KOTUG provides the complete portfolio based on a combination of long-standing knowledge and advanced technologies. From designing, building, chartering and operating vessels to training people and providing innovative consultancy services. The company’s expertise is divided across five pillars: Towage, Training & Consultancy, Intelligence, Subsea and Maritime Excellence. KOTUG is active in Europe, Russia, Asia, Australia, Africa, Middle East, North and South America and the Caribbean and continues to expand its operations worldwide. KOTUG is family-owned and firmly committed to the highest industry standards of health, safety, environment, quality and security. www.kotug.com

Media contact: Jacqueline van den Heuvel ǀ j.vandenheuvel@kotug.com | tel. +31(0)10 820 1063 | Mobile: +31 (0) 6 29 70 22 90

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