Houston-based Kinder Morgan Energy Partners (KMP) has acquired two Jones Act tankers from Crowley Maritime for approximately $270m.
The vessels, MT Pennsylvania and the MT Florida, are currently chartered to transport crude oil, condensate and refined products in the US.
However, Crowley Maritime will continue to manage and operate the vessels without any changes in crew and operation.
With 330,000 barrels of cargo capacity, the vessels will expand Kinder Morgan’s existing fleet to seven operating tankers.
In addition, the company has five tankers under construction at General Dynamics’ Nassco shipyard and those are expected to be delivered between 2015 and 2017.
Crowley Maritime chairman and CEO Tom Crowley said: "This transaction helps Crowley maintain a healthy balance in our capital programme.
"We have invested more than $1.5bn in new, US-built tank vessels in recent years, giving us a fleet of 17 articulated tug barges (ATBs) and four new 330,000 barrel tankers being delivered in 2015 and 2016. We are committed to continuing to provide safe and reliable petroleum transportation to our customers."
Under this new agreement, Crowley will be able to receive the service of sailors from the American Maritime Officers Union and Seafarers International Union.
Owned by Kinder Morgan Inc, KMP currently operates around 52,000 miles of pipelines and 180 terminals.
Image: Crowley Maritime’s existing fleet includes 17 articulated tug barges (ATBs). Photo: courtesy of Crowley Maritime Corporation.