Philly suspends tugboat contract, hires new operator after duck boat crash that killed 2

Philadelphia says it has hired a new tugboat operator for a sludge-hauling contract following a fatal collision between a barge and an amphibious tour boat on the Delaware River.

Mayor Michael Nutter's spokesman Doug Oliver says McAllister Towing & Transportation Co. will provide service on a month-to-month basis. He says K-Sea Transportation agreed to suspend its contract pending findings of a National Transportation Safety Board investigation.

K-Sea Transportation hasn't returned calls placed Monday seeking comment.

The city says it's ordering the Gloucester City, N.J.-based McAllister Towing to post lookouts on barges. K-Sea Transportation hasn't said whether there was a lookout on July 7 when a barge struck a duck boat with 37 people aboard. The duck boat capsized and sank, and two Hungarian tourists died.


Information from: The Philadelphia Inquirer,