Captain Maria de los Santos will be leading the team on board Svitzer Monte Cristi, accompanied by Chief Engineer Marysabel Moreno and supported by sailors, Paloma Montero, Loreanni Torres and Juana Custodio.

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In order to make this a reality, the General Manager of Svitzer Caribbean, Captain Dickson Rivas, and others at the company spent about two years pursuing the project, focusing the team’s energy on training.

Now, Svitzer aspires that this initiative will help change the historical predominantly male trend in the maritime industry. In fact, according to The International Transport Worker’s Federation, just 2% of the maritime workforce is made up of women, most of whom are employed on cruises and ferries.

Speaking on how such a project will work, Chief Engineer of Svitzer Monte Cristi, Marysabel Moreno, said that many may think that women are not able to work on a powerful tug boat, but the crew has shown that this type of work is not exclusive to a specific gender. 'With dedication, it is very possible.'

Moreover, Captain Eduard Medina stated that these women have become local icons for others and have proven to be an efficient and hardworking team. Especially in the Dominican Republic, women are found in the ranks of officers or captains directing vessels and performing maneuvers safely, Svitzer adds.

As for the technical characteristics of the ship, it is 24 meters and equipped with a pair of Caterpillar 3516 C main engines, each producing 2,100kW of power at 1,600 rpm. The tugs can reach a top top operating speed of 13 knots and are capable of carrying 78m3 of fuel oil and around 12 tonnes of fresh water, as well as 4.4m3 of foam.

They also incorporate CJC off-line filters for fuel oil, main engine oil and thruster gear oil.