Friday, September 28, 2018

Newer Trucks Required at San Pedro Bay Ports

By Karen Robes Meeks

Starting on Oct. 1, new trucks servicing the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles must be 2014 or newer, according to new provisions adopted by the twin ports in June.

The new mandate will only apply to trucks registering for the first time under the Port Drayage Truck Registry (PDTR). Trucks already in the PDTR as of Sept. 30 will still be able to work in the ports if they are current on their annual dues and comply with state emission rules. Registered trucks are 2007 and newer, with about half at least 2010 or newer models, according to the port.

This is part of the ports’ push to strengthen its pollution-fighting efforts through an update of its landmark San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan, which include moving toward zero-emission trucks by 2035.

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New Port Angeles Coast Guard Pier

By Karen Robes Meeks

US Coast Guard and Port Angeles officials celebrated the new Transit Protection System pier and facilities in Port Angeles, Wash., earlier this month.

Situated on Coast Guard Air Station/Sector Field Office Port Angeles, the 425-foot long pile-supported pier and utility trestle can berth up to seven boats, including patrol boats and submarine, and special warfare support ships.

The project also included getting rid of the former Icicle Seafoods laydown area and a rock jetty as well as building an above-ground 10,000-gallon diesel fuel storage tank, a 200-square-foot armory and an 8,200-square-foot space with sleeping quarters for up to 30 people, according to the Coast Guard, adding that 267 jobs were created from the pier project.

Cybersecurity Incident Hits San Diego Port

By Karen Robes Meeks

Port of San Diego officials are working to recover from a serious cybersecurity incident that first disrupted its information systems Tuesday.

Chief Executive Officer Randa Coniglio said Wednesday that “the port has mobilized a team of industry experts and local, regional, state and federal partners to minimize impacts and restore system functionality, with priority placed on public safety-related systems.”

Coniglio explained that the port has reported the disruption to the California Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) and the County of San Diego Office of Emergency Services and the Harbor Police Department has alternative systems and procedures in place to shrink impact to public safety.

“Port employees are currently at work but have limited functionality, which may have temporary impacts on service to the public, especially in the areas of park permits, public records requests, and business services,” Coniglio said. The port will provide updates as information becomes available.

Olympia Seeks Executive Director

By Karen Robes Meeks

The search for a new executive director for the Port of Olympia is now open. The port posted the job description on its website earlier this week.

The winning candidate will manage a $10 million operating budget and 42 full time employees. The commission hopes to choose a new leader by the end of the year.

The former Executive Director Ed Galligan, who helmed the port since 2005, stepped down after the commission, desiring a directional change, placed him on administrative leave last spring. Airport Director Rudy Rudolph is serving as acting executive director while the search is underway.

Visit to apply or for more information.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Hawaii Back Online After Olivia

By Karen Robes Meeks

Hawaiian harbors sustained minimal disruption following Tropical Storm Olivia and were able to open quickly after the storm, thanks to coordination efforts by the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT), US Coast Guard Sector Honolulu, the Captain of the Port and Hawaii Harbor Users Group.

“The protection of our state’s critical infrastructure requires the cooperation of many different agencies—from the FAA, and the airline industry to Federal Highways and emergency management at all levels of government,” said Hawaii Department of Transportation Director Jade Butay. “Our partners were all on standby during Olivia and we are thankful for their commitment to work together in emergencies.”

All commercial harbors resumed operations by 5 p.m. September 12.

“A key strategy in ensuring that cargo movement could resume as quickly as possible was the minimization of potential damage to harbor facilities,” according to the HDOT. “Prior to hurricane season, HDOT staff communicated with harbor users and made clear additional HDOT requirements to evacuate ports prior to Port Condition Zulu. These requirements, which include submission and HDOT approval of a heavy weather plan and confirmation of a tug assist for each vessel remaining in port, were reiterated to HDOT harbor users the week before the approach of Tropical Cyclone Olivia.”

Port of Los Angeles Joins International Organization

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Los Angeles is the first US member of the International Port Community Systems Association (IPCSA). The organization was originally founded in 2011 as the European Port Community Systems Association before expanding in 2014 as an international association. Richard Morton, secretary general of IPCSA, said the organization is delighted to welcome Los Angeles.

“This is another exciting expansion of the membership and geographical reach of IPCSA, which started out as a European organization only seven years ago,” he said. “We look forward to sharing and exchanging knowledge with the Port of Los Angeles, which has pioneered the Port Optimizer over the past two years. IPCSA provides a platform for members from around the world to share and exchange experience and best practice in the smooth flow of information, to enhance cargo flow and trade facilitation.”

The association’s consultative status at the International Maritime Organization and the key role it plays in international standards meetings, including the World Customs Organization, ISO, UN/CEFACT and IATA, are important to the port, said Port Executive Director Gene Seroka. “Our purpose in joining this elite global association is to enhance our efforts for a common understanding of how Port Community Systems operate and what they can deliver today and in the future,” he said. “IPCSA provides that platform.”

Long Beach Security Grant

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Long Beach will be able to boost security at its seaport, thanks to a nearly $4.2 million grant from the US Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency.

“Maintaining security here is of vital importance to our local economy and the nation’s economy, and the Harbor Commission is appreciative of the federal funding for this effort,” said Tracy Egoscue, president of the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners.

The grant will be used for security system maintenance, along with expanding and enhancing physical and cyber security capabilities at the nation’s second-busiest seaport.

“These funds are critical to maintaining our robust security program,” said Mario Cordero, executive director of the Port of Long Beach. “We are able to service and replace critical systems to keep our harbor safe from a wide variety of threats. We are thankful to our partners at the US Coast Guard and the Federal Emergency Management Agency for their continued support.”

Oakland’s Busiest August

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Oakland posted its busiest August in history last month when it moved 85,166 TEUs, according to latest port numbers. Imports also rose 9.2 percent over the same period last year, which the port attributes to strong consumer spending in the US.

Officials said the numbers bode well for the port as it prepares for the kick off of peak shipping season, the period between August and October when retailers replenish their shelves in anticipation of the holidays.

“We’re encouraged by the solid start to peak season, but there’s still uncertainty in the trade environment,” said Port of Oakland Maritime Director John Driscoll. “Let’s see what the next few months bring.”

According to the port, the total cargo volume for 2018 is up 3.3 percent compared to last year. If the trend continues, this could lead to a third straight year of all-time cargo volume record.