March 27 - Crowley has provided ocean towing services for the Tubular Bells topside in the Gulf of Mexico for oil and gas industry contractor, Saipem.

Crowley's ocean class tug Ocean Wind towed the production deck, while invader class tug Pilot towing the barge Marmack 303, delivered the construction deck - in both cases the cargo was received at the sea buoy Cat Island Pass before being transported to Mississippi Canyon Block 725.

"The Ocean Wind was particularly suitable for the Tubular Bells deck section tow out and lift due to its dynamic positioning capabilities," explained Ocean Wind captain, Ward Davis.

"The Ocean Wind was able to position and hold the barge alongside the SAIPEM 7000 semi-submersible crane and pipe-laying vessel with light tension on the tow wire while they prepared for and made the lift of the deck section," added Davis.

Tubular Bells is expected to begin production in 2014 and should peak in the range of 40,000 to 50,000 barrels of oil a day.