Friday, May 3, 2019

Alaska West Express Wins Safe Truck Fleet Award

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Alaska Trucking Association has bestowed Alaska West Express with its 2018 Alaska Safe Truck Fleet of the Year Award, which recognizes carriers who safely operate on the highway and in the workplace.

Alaska West Express, which also garnered the honor in 2013, 2014, and 2016, earned its newest accolade for its safety performance in 2018, including accident frequency rates, compliance, safety and accountability (CSA) scores and OSHA recordable injuries, according to the company.

"This award demonstrates the dedication and hard work of our entire team of transportation professionals," says Alaska West Express President Eric Badger. "Our drivers, maintenance personnel, operators, dispatchers, supervisors, managers and administrators all share in this success. Their efforts to continually identify safety improvements in our extremely challenging conditions is the cornerstone of our program. The safety of our people, the environment and our equipment, is our most important objective each day."

Coos Bay Bridge Reopens

By Karen Robes Meeks

After being closed for a year because of structural failure, the Coos Bay Swing Span Bridge has been reopened by the Oregon International Port of Coos Bay.

In mid-April 2018, two center support columns failed, making the bridge inoperable. Finishing this major repair allows rail to relink from the North Spit to Coos Bay, a vital trade connection for the region.

With assistance from Jordan Cove LNG who provided the transload site (truck to rail), port officials were able to establish a transload facility on the North Spit, giving rail shippers south of the bridge the option to continue to use rail to transport their goods to market, the port reported.

The repairs include replacing the center structural columns and bracing and fixing the electrical mechanical system. The port took over ownership of the Coos Bay Swing Span bridge in 2010.

LA/LB Look at Handling Technology

By Karen Robes Meeks

The ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles are seeking public input on a draft assessment of new cargo-handling equipment technology, which will look at the current state of technology, operational characteristics, economic considerations, infrastructure availability and commercial readiness relating to cleaner cargo-handling equipment.

This assessment is part of a larger effort to lower air pollution and meet major zero-emissions goals set by the Clean Air Action Plan.

The plan calls for terminal equipment and trucks to reach zero-emissions status by 2030 and 2035, respectively.

Submit comments by May 31 to

North Star Winners Announced

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Northwest Seaport Alliance named its North Star Awards winners at an April 24 breakfast event at the Museum of Flight. Prologis netted the Cargo Anchor Award, which recognizes businesses that increase cargo volume and generate economic activity for the Puget Sound.

The company garnered a nomination for the 1.3-million-square-foot Prologis Park Tacoma project and for the Prologis Georgetown Crossroads, a multi-story in-fill warehouse development.

TOTE Maritime Alaska earned the Environmental Stewardship Award for promoting sustainability and showing its commitment to the environment. The company has plans to move its Orca Class vessels to liquefied natural gas.

“These awards recognize the great work of these businesses and the entire industry to build a strong Puget Sound gateway,” said Port of Seattle Commissioner Peter Steinbrueck. “The alliance is proud of our partnerships with industry to create new jobs and promote a competitive, innovative culture.”

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Port of Los Angeles Addresses Cyber Security

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Los Angeles on Wednesday gathered supply chain stakeholders to discuss ways to address cyber security threats.

“In partnership with our maritime industry stakeholders, we have the opportunity to enhance the ability of the port ecosystem to see cyber threats on the horizon and improve information sharing to help manage respective, and collective, cyber risk,” said Port Executive Director Gene Seroka. I’m proud that the port is taking the lead on the first ever cross-sector Cyber Resilience Center.”

The proposed Center would allow various companies within the port complex to share cyber threat information in an effort to defend against a cyberattack that could cripple the supply chain.

“Ports are a key part of a complex system that must address cyber risks,” said Deputy Executive Director and Chief of Public Safety and Emergency Management Tom Gazsi. “Over the past few years, we have seen how cyber incidents have impacted some ports across the world, threatening the operations of the entire maritime supply chain. That’s why we’re taking a collaborative approach to strengthen our cyber security posture.”

Seattle Adopts Sustainable Work Plan

By Karen Robes Meeks

In a newly adopted work plan for the Energy and Sustainability Committee, the Port of Seattle zeroed in on five areas for improving environmental and community health in Puget Sound and fighting climate change. Port Commissioners Fred Felleman and Ryan Calkins co-chair the committee.

The maritime specific focus mandates include:

1. Developing a Sustainable Project Framework Resolution that would help the commission look at sustainable alternatives when the design and build capital projects are being sought;

2. Creating a Waterfront Clean Energy Strategic Plan;

3. Establishing the Maritime Blue Maritime Inspiration Awards to recognize companies and organizations in Washington; and

4. Incorporating Environmental Stewardship into the New Cruise Terminal.

“This new Committee Charter continues the Commission’s priority goal to be the greenest, most energy efficient Port in North America,” said Felleman. “The Charter remains primarily focused on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and community impacts by improving the port’s own operational practices and partnering with other agencies, airlines, and maritime industries.”

Oakland to Address Truck Traffic

By Karen Robes Meeks

On Friday, the Port of Oakland moved forward with a five-year plan to address truck traffic when it endorsed the West Oakland Truck Management Plan.

The plan, created jointly by the city of Oakland and the port, is designed to divert big rigs from neighborhoods and limit truck parking close to neighborhoods.

“We listened closely to the West Oakland community to understand their concerns about truck traffic,” said City of Oakland Planner Patricia McGowan. “Then we collaborated with them to shape a plan that addresses those concerns.”

Ten strategies will be implemented over the next five years, including safety upgrades at key West Oakland intersections near the port; updating designated truck routes and signage; and stricter parking enforcement with a potential increase in fines.

“It is the port’s responsibility to be a good neighbor in Oakland,” said Port Environmental Planner Andrea Gardner, who helped develop the proposal. “With this plan, we’re keeping our promise to minimize the impact of containerized cargo transportation in Oakland,” she added.

Camas-Washougal Recognized for Sustainability

By Karen Robes Meeks

Earlier this month, the Port of Camas-Washougal leadership in sustainability was recognized by the Pacific Coast Congress (PCC) of Harbormasters and Port Managers, Inc. at the 45th Annual Spring Conference in Newport, Oregon.

According to the port, the PCC is dedicated to promoting the development and growth of the marina industry and membership through communication, education and professional certification.

"It is an honor and a privilege to be nominated by such an esteemed organization," stated Chief Executive Officer David Ripp. "Our goal is to provide world class scenery, wildlife habitat, and recreational opportunities for generations to come and we could not do that without the knowledgeable and caring service and attention to detail that our Harbormaster Mark Hamrick and Assistant Harbormaster Matt Cox provide."