International vessels have been trading in the Port of Charleston, South Carolina for centuries. Charleston is the sixth largest container port in the U.S., and it is also home to Detyens Shipyards, Inc. (DSI). Detyens is a full-service repair yard with extensive crane services and craft workshops, three graving docks, a floating drydock and six deep water piers.
In the past several years, DSI has seen an increase in the number of drydock inquiries and bookings from international vessel operators. “In the last two quarters, we’ve drydocked eight internationally owned and operated vessels”, says Peter Browne, vice president of estimating. “We feel this is a combination of several factors which includes our year round good weather conditions, our dry dock availability, our pricing structure, our ability to complete on time on budget repairs and that the our shipyard is technically capable of handling sophisticated refits.”
Among other recent Detyens contracts, Marine Atlantic drydocked the Canadian-flagged ro/pax vessels Atlantic Vision and Highlanders this spring. “We had limited days in dry dock due to our dry docking schedule, so every minute counted and we worked around the clock to complete the work so they could depart on time,” said Can “Johnny” Yazgan, project manager for the Marine Atlantic drydockings. Ian McDonald, director of technical services at Marine Atlantic, affirmed Detyens' commitment to success. “The Atlantic Vision sailed away from the drydock with only 18 days in the dock (as scheduled) and a very fine job has been done,” he said. “We cannot thank Detyens enough for the professionalism of every worker in the yard.”
Long-time customer Bay Ferries drydocked the Canadian-flagged ro/pax Fundy Rose in January, and in April the firm brought in the high speed ferry known as “The Cat” (the MSC-owned Alakai). This is the Alakai's second drydocking at DSI. “The first time we drydocked the Alakai, we completely changed her exterior paint scheme and we are very proud of how she looks,” said Chris Donathan, project manager at DSI.
Detyens Shipyards, a family-owned and operated company, has transitioned from a small shipyard with wooden piers and wooden docks to one of the United States' largest commercial shipyards. “We took over the Charleston Naval Shipyard when it was closed by the Department of Defense in 1995. It was like going from the county fair (our old shipyard) to Disney World,” said Loy Stewart, Jr., president of DSI. “Now we have just finished our most successful year ever, and we look forward to continuing our mission to be the best commercial repair shipyard in the country. We are focused on safety and an exceptional drydocking experience for our customers. We strive to ensure that their visit to our one-stop shipyard will be satisfying.”