PASCAGOULA, Mississippi -- Signal International LLC is adding deck barges to its product line in Orange, Texas. The company is building a 300-ft (91-m) x 100-ft (30-m) ocean deck barge for Signet Maritime Corp. at its shipyard in Orange, with delivery scheduled for 1Q 2010.
Signal says its yard in Orange has undergone a major transformation to elevate its marine and heavy manufacturing capability. Significant capital investment and process changes have been implemented over the past two years. The primary focus has been on improving the workflow within the nearly 500,000-sq ft (46,000-sq m) covered manufacturing area and increasing automation, the company says.
“Signal’s expansion into the large deck barge market is a natural for our operations in Orange,” says Dick Marler, Signal’s CEO and president. “The Orange yard has built barges in the past and we still have experienced production and management personnel who were part of that effort. We have challenged our workforce to develop new methods and tools to be successful in a competitive market. With low steel prices and our vastly improved productivity now is the time for potential customers to take a hard look at expanding their fleets with a Signal product.”
“Signet is optimistic about our market for ocean-going deck barges,” adds Barry Snyder, president of Signet Maritime. “Jointly, Signal and Signet have developed a superior extra heavy deck strength design to minimize the customer’s need for load equalization that will be in high demand to work in the offshore market. Our design features a 5,000-pound per square foot deck strength for large loads and a radial bow, reducing residual resistance for efficient towing. This will not be the last barge of this type that we will order.”