Maersk Line Limited completed the purchase of two US-flag vessels which it will continue to operate in the US market with US crews.
The PFC William B Baugh and PVT Franklin J. Phillips were operating under charter to the US Navy's Military Sealift Command until early 2008 when the military elected to end the charter. It returned the ships, both 755 feet long with six onboard cargo cranes, two side ports and a stern ramp, to private owners who then offered them for sale.
Maersk will rename the ships the Maersk Texas and Maersk Tennessee and the vessels will join the Maersk commercial fleet serving the US charter and preference cargo spot markets.
According to Maersk, both ships will continue to be crewed in all licensed and unlicensed positions by US mariners from the American Maritime Officers and Seafarers International Union.
The ships entered service in 1984 and were operated and managed by Maersk Line Limited in support of the US Marine Corps Prepositioning Program.