tugboat damen


As tugboats and escort vessels aim for efficiency, Bureau Veritas’ offers industry-leading Rules and services to support compliance, performance and environmental protection.

Expert tugs support

The shipping industry’s most recent demands for tug performance have facilitated an array of new designs and technologies, while emphasizing the need for reducing environmental damage. Operational requirements for tugs are constantly expanding, with high expectations for the reliability and efficiency of vessels and crew members. Additionally, authorities and offshore terminal operators require increased availability of escort and offshore terminal tugs to assist ever larger ships. These vessels often operate in severe weather conditions, including icy and Arctic waters.

Bureau Veritas is the #1 classification partner for tugboats, dedicated to the safety of your vessels. We actively participate in the development of international shipping standards, and introduce Rules that anticipate the growing demands of innovative vessel design.

Bourbon Yack - Courtesy Bourbon


As a leading classification society, Bureau Veritas is dedicated to the creation and support of international shipping standards. Our expertise has led us to develop improved stability requirements for towing and escorting vessels. These Rules have since been adopted for IMO as the gold standard for the tugboat sector.  

Tugboats - Courtesy Multraship


In the race for high performance escort boats, Bureau Veritas is at the forefront of concept approvals for advanced vessel design. Our design review allows us to assess ships with a range of innovative equipment, including environmentally friendly fuel systems; carrousel designs that enable faster, safer work; and batteries that allow for maximum bollard pull and feature increased installed power.

Green Tugboat - Courtesy OStenjo Rederi


In recent years, the shipping industry has seen a rise in green propulsion alternatives (i.e., electric hybrid, LNG propulsion), as reducing emissions and fuel consumption have become major decision-making factors. However, safety issues must be addressed before vessels change their fuel systems. This requires a comprehensive regulatory framework to identify risks and implement necessary mitigation measures.

Autonomous Tugboat - Courtesy of Damen Shipyards


Recent technological developments (i.e., increased connectivity, computerized control systems, cyber risk management tools) have pushed the marine industry towards autonomous shipping. To assist shipyards and owners, Bureau Veritas has published the “Guidelines for Autonomous Shipping”, introducing four tiers of ship autonomy. These Guidelines provide in-depth recommendations for risk identification and mitigation, ensuring that autonomous systems function reliably.


As part of an international consortium of classification societies, Bureau Veritas is working to produce bollard pull guidelines for tugboats. 



Photo credits ©Bourbon, Multraship, Østensjø Rederi, Damen