A liftboat is a self-propelled, self-elevating vessel with a relatively large open deck capable of carrying equipment and supplies in support of various offshore mineral exploration and production or offshore construction activities. A liftboat also has the capability of rapidly raising its hull clear of the water on its own legs so as to provide a stable platform from which maintenance and construction work may be conducted.
The first liftboat was designed in 1955 by brothers Lynn and Orin Dean in Violet, Louisiana. In 1950 the Dean brothers owned a repair service for automobiles, marine, and farm equipment called Universal Repair Service which is now known as EBI, Elevating Boats LLC. EBI, Elevating Boats LLC, operates 30 liftboats that service the shallow water Oil & Gas industry in the Gulf of Mexico from their liftboat dock in Houma, Louisiana.