Tug Use In Port – NEW Third edition 2018


First published in 1997, with a second edition in 2002, Tug Use in Port by Capt Henk Hensen is known as the ‘tug bible’ – the essential practical guide to port towage and escort operations. Since the publication of the second edition, developments in tug design and operation have continued to improve tug capabilities as well as effective and safe tug use. Sadly, there have still have been a number of accidents, often with dramatic consequences. Now, Capt Hensen has revised, updated and added to this invaluable textbook, with the third edition to be published this summer by The ABR Company.

Some significant changes have been made in this third edition, including:
o The inclusion of several new tug designs, as well as terminal tugs, environmentally friendly tugs, Japanese style tugs, and tugs that operate  in icy conditions.
o Tug assistance in ports, and ice-covered fairways, is further addressed, as is tug assistance in locks. Bow-to-bow operations are discussed in more detail.
o Stability has been further explained, along with recommendations for tug masters with respect to stability.
o Environmental limits for tug operations are discussed, based on the results of the SafeTug JIP (Joint Industry Project), and attention is paid to operating in fog conditions.
o The impact of crew reduction, another important item, is addressed.
o Information on towing winches, towing hooks, towlines, towline friction and SWLs of ship’s deck equipment has all been updated, and the need to use proper heaving lines addressed.
o New aspects of training are included – such as training for LNG tugs, LNG locations, ice and wave conditions – as well as new developments in training tools, eg specific tug simulators, small training and miniature tugs.
o New technical developments, such as virtual and augmented reality, are discussed – along with use of simulators for human factor studies.
o The escort chapter has been thoroughly reviewed, including the reasons for escorting and an update on various escort regulations.
o The topic of autonomous ships is discussed, including the possible effects on tugs and tug operations.
o The important issues of risk assessment and safety management systems are newly included in this edition, along with commentary on the effects of the US Subchapter M.


Chapter headings 1 Tug design factors 2 Types of harbour tug 3 Assisting methods 4 Tug capabilities and limitations 5 Bollard pull required 6 Interaction and tug safety 7 Towing equipment 8 Training and tug simulation 9 Escort tugs 10 Tug developments 11 Balancing safety
Plus extensive references and appendices The author Capt Henk Hensen, FNI “This book is specifically written with the needs of maritime professionals involved in the day-today practice and training of ship handling with tugs in mind, particularly pilots, tug masters and training instructors. It should also be of value to towing companies, shipmasters and mates of seagoing vessels and all other persons or organisations involved, one way or another, with tugs and ship handling. It is my earnest hope that this book will contribute to an improved knowledge of tugs and lead to increasing safety in tug and ship handling operations in ports, port approaches and offshore terminals around the world.”

Order Information
The large-format hardback book is illustrated with a wealth of detailed diagrams, graphics and photographs. 25% discount will be given on all pre-orders of the book (orders taken before 1 June 2018 – discount not applicable to P&P) made online at or by e-mail/telephone. The book will be on sale at ITS 2018, which takes place in Marseille from 25-29 June. Published by The ABR Company Limited ABR House, Prospect Place, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 8QA, UK
Tel: +44 (0)1225 868821 Email: Website:




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