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Dredges and survey vessels

Rotating image showing Portland District's dredging and survey vesselsSupport of the United States’ navigation needs is one of the Army Corps of Engineers’ earliest civil works missions dating back to 1824. The U.S. Congress, recognizing the importance of the Columbia and Willamette rivers to the economy of the Northwest, established the Portland District in 1871. One of the original goals of the District was to remove obstacles to navigation in the two rivers. Today, the region’s commercial development is still dependent on safe passage of sea-going ships across the bars and up the waterways. The Portland Corps of Engineers keeps Oregon's waterways safe and navigable through dredging sandbars and channel deepening, ensuring safe transport for more than $18 billion in waterborne commerce.

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Call us: 503-808-4510

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Hazards to navigation

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The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Coast Guard have authority to remove hazards to navigation from the waterways of the United States. 
Generally, the U.S.Coast Guard is the primary agency to identify and remove a hazard to navigation; however, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers may be asked for assistance. Either USCG or USACE may remove hazards at the owner's expense. Local port districts, city, county and state agencies may also take legal action against an owner for removing a hazard to navigation within their jurisdictions.

Authority for removal of hazards to navigation by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is referenced in Sections 15-20 of the River and Harbor Act of 1899.
Guidelines for coordination, removal of hazards to navigation, and cost recovery between the United States Coast Guard and the United States Army Corps of Engineers are found in the following:

 

Send an email with the subject "Hazards to Navigation," your questions or comments, and your preferred contact information to Hazards to Navigation Coordinator at:

DLL-CENWPHazardstoNavigation@usace.army.mil

About our dredging mission

The Portland District’s hopper dredges Yaquina and Essayons, work to ensure a safe “highway” for ships and other vessels. The hopper dredge is a specialized sea-going vessel designed to dredge and transport dredged material from ocean bars, fast flowing rivers and isolated harbors to open-water disposal areas. A hopper dredge works somewhat like a vacuum cleaner. More details about Portland District's dredging and survey vessels are outlined below.

About our hydrosurvey mission

Our survey vessels provide hydrographic data to help maintain more than 400 miles of navigation channels vital to the Pacific Northwest. Corps survey vessels travel from Cape Disappointment on Washington's southern coast to the Chetco River on Oregon's coast, and from the Pacific Ocean east along to the Columbia River to McNary Dam. Sophisticated electronic equipment is used to survey river and harbor bottoms to determine where dredging is needed. Our boats also do special purpose surveys, support contract dredging and provide channel condition surveys.

Survey vessels

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Elton trading card (front)

The Elton's hydrofoil-assisted catamaran design gives a stable platform for monitoring channel and harbor conditions and precisely surveying areas in need of dredging. The Elton's design allows enhanced maneuverability; her hulls are coated with a paint to prevent sealife from adhering to them. Her diesel engines produce fewer harmful emissions, and her fuel tanks stand alone inside the hulls, helping minimize risk of a fuel spill. Click the trading card to the right for a larger version (.pdf).

 

 

Specifications:

Body

Foil-assisted catamaran with 5083-H116 aluminum hull and stainless steel hydrofoils

Length 59’5” Breadth 23'6" Hull depth 9’2” Light draft 3’3” 
Max speed 36 knots  Fuel capacity: 1,328 gallons
Engines MTU Series 60, 825HP @2300 RPM Engine controls Hamilton Blue Arrow
Propulsion system Hamilton 403 Jets Generators Northern Lights–12 kW, 120/240V
Multi-beam transducer Kongsberg EM3002 Single-beam transducer Odom SMBB200-3
Anchor winch Kinematic Marine, 16x24 W8, S/S drum Other Galley, head, two survey stations
Green specs Intersleek 900 Foul Release bottom paint UCON Trident AW hydraulic fluid

 

A legacy of excellence

The survey vessel Elton is named for Arthur Elton, an individual who played a significant role in the direction and accomplishment of the Portland District’s navigation mission. Arthur Elton came to work for the Portland District’s Plant Maintenance Section in November 1993 as an engineer in the marine engineering sub-section. He was instrumental in improving the ship repair processes for the Corps’ survey boats as well as the dredges Essayons and Yaquina. The design and construction of both the West Mark and the Patterson were accomplished during his tenure. Art was diagnosed with lung cancer in September 2001 and passed away on Sept. 27, 2003.

K. H. Patterson trading card (front)

The K.H. Patterson was designed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, built by Almar in Tacoma, Wash., and christened in 2001.

 

Specifications
 Length 27'0"  Beam 8'6" Draft 4’  Top speed 30 knots 
Engines 130HP Honda outboards Fuel capacity 130 gallons

 

A legacy of excellence

The K.H. Patterson was named for Ken Patterson, whose inspiration and leadership strengthened the District’s navigation mission. Ken was an active duty and reserve U.S. Naval officer who captained a deepwater sailboat off the Oregon and Washington coasts in his off-duty time. He believed navigation was as important to the Northwest as hydropower generation. Ken led the Portland District navigation and hydrographic survey missions for several years, eventually becoming the Chief of Operations. The vessel bearing his name is a tribute to his contributions to the Corps of Engineers and the navigation community.

Redlinger trading card (front)

The Redlinger has a hydrofoil-assisted catamaran design which gives a stable platform to support channel and harbor condition monitoring and precise surveys of dredging areas. Her design allows enhanced maneuverability; her hulls are coated with a paint to prevent sealife from adhering to them. The Redlinger's diesel engines produce fewer harmful emissions, and her fuel tanks stand alone inside the hulls, helping minimize risk of a fuel spill.

 

Specifications:

Body

Foil-assisted catamaran with 5083-H116 aluminum hull and stainless steel hydrofoils

Length 59’5” Breadth 23'6" Hull depth 9’2” Light draft 3’3” 
Max speed 36 knots  Fuel capacity: 1,328 gallons
Engines MTU Series 60, 825HP @2300 RPM Engine controls Hamilton Blue Arrow
Propulsion system Hamilton 403 Jets Generators Northern Lights–12 kW, 120/240V
Multi-beam transducer Kongsberg EM3002 Single-beam transducer Odom SMBB200-3
Anchor winch Kinematic Marine, 16x24 W8, S/S drum Other Galley, head, two survey stations
Green specs Intersleek 900 Foul Release bottom paint UCON Trident AW hydraulic fluid

 

A legacy of excellence

Survey vessel Redlinger is named for Jake Redlinger, a Corps leader who was well respected for his expertise and ability to get things done. Jake Redlinger was an active proponent of dredging and dredging issues. He began working for Portland District in 1966 after earning his Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering from Kansas State University. In 1989, Jake went to Alaska with the dredge Essayons to take part in clean-up efforts following a devastating oil spill in Prince William Sound. He was a member of the Society of American Military Engineers, the American Society of Civil Engineers, and the Professional Engineers of Oregon. Jake was the navigation manager at the Northwestern Division before he passed away on Dec. 1, 1997.

West Mark trading card (front)

The West Mark was designed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and built by Almar in Tacoma, Wash. Christened in 1995, her name reflects her mission and area of operations.

 

Specifications
 Length 26'0"  Beam 8'6" Draft 4’  Top speed 30 knots 
Engine Volvo diesel Fuel capacity 90 gallons

 

Corps-owned dredges

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Essayons trading card (front)The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ hopper dredge was delivered to the Portland District in 1983. The Essayons, operated by a merchant marine crew, helps maintain the entrance bars, rivers and harbors on the coasts of California, Oregon, Hawaii, Alaska and, in emergencies, the Mississippi River. Because of its size and dredging depth, the Essayons is well-suited for dredging larger coastal entrances. Click here for more about the Essayons. 

Click the image to the right for the trading card.

Yaquina trading card (front)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ hopper dredge Yaquina, operated by a merchant marine crew, was delivered to the Portland District in 1981. The Yaquina helps to maintain the entrance bars, rivers and harbors on the coasts of Oregon, California  and Washington. Because of its size, the Yaquina is well-suited for dredging small, shallow coastal entrances. Click here for more about the Yaquina.

Click the image to the left for the trading card.