Friday, May 17, 2019

‘New’ Cranes for Everett

By Karen Robes Meeks

This week, Foss Maritime headed to the Port of Los Angeles to pick up two gantry cranes, formerly installed at the Everport Terminal, that will be used at the Port of Everett’s upgraded South Terminal.

The cranes are a key component of the $57 million modernization project, which will allow the port to accommodate the next generation of over-dimensional cargo, including aerospace parts for the new 777X.

“The completion of this upgrade will add another full-service berth at the Port to accommodate project, bulk, breakbulk, high and heavy and containerized cargoes,” said Carl Wollebek, the port’s chief operating officer. “We are excited to be able to add this additional option to our current and future customers.”

The South Terminal dock has been strengthened to support the 2,400 tons of cranes, which are expected to arrive by June 7.

“We are excited to partner with the Port of Everett on this crane transportation project,” said Foss Vice President Paul Gallagher. “Foss Maritime and the Port of Everett have a long history of working together. Marine transportation cargo projects like this allow us to use our specialized equipment and experienced people at our regional offices in Southern California and Puget Sound to safely perform this type of job. We look forward to this and to future projects with the port.”

John Lockwood Wins Maritime
Achievement Award

This morning, May 17, retired US Coast Guard Rear Admiral John Lockwood was awarded the 67th annual Puget Sound Maritime Achievement Award for his exemplary service to the Puget Sound maritime industry.

The award was presented to RADM Lockwood by RADM Steve Metruck, current Executive Director of the Port of Seattle and former Commander of US Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound, at the annual Seattle Maritime Festival Breakfast. RADM Lockwood has worked in the Seattle maritime industry for more than 17 years, following a distinguished career in the United States Coast Guard. Overall, he has more than 50 years of maritime expertise.

Lockwood has provided outstanding leadership for the region’s maritime community through his work at Vigor Shipyards and with countless local maritime organizations. He is known throughout the Puget Sound maritime community for his professionalism, dedication and commitment to the industry and its long-term health.

Lockwood, who was commissioned from Officer Candidate School in Yorktown, Virginia in June 1963, assumed command of the Thirteenth Coast Guard District in June 1993.

His awards include two Legions of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal with Combat "V" and two Meritorious Service Medals. Lockwood retired from the Coast Guard in 1998 and joined the private sector, as senior advisor to Vigor Shipyards, formerly Todd Pacific Shipyards.

He is also the President of Lockwood Associates, Inc., providing consulting services in shipbuilding, ship repair and conversion, government affairs, and homeland security.

Longshore Worker Killed

By Karen Robes Meeks

An International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) worker has died and another was seriously injured Wednesday in an industrial accident at a Port of Los Angeles container terminal.

The incident involving a top loader container handler happened around 7:25 a.m. at Fenix Marine Services at Pier 300, according to the port.

The injured worker was taken to Harbor UCLA Medical Center. The employees’ names have not yet been released.

“My heart goes out to the families of the victims of this tragic accident and to all the brothers and sisters of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union,” said Port Executive Director Gene Seroka. “It’s particularly tragic that this accident occurred on the day of the ILWU’s annual ‘First Blood’ event, which honors those who have lost their lives working on the waterfront.”

Los Angeles Port Police, the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health, and the US Coast Guard are investigating the incident. Meanwhile, the Fenix Marine Services container terminal is currently closed.

"We are deeply saddened to report the death of an ILWU longshoreman, and the serious injury of another, following an incident that occurred at the Fenix Marine Services container terminal,” Fenix Marine Services released in a statement. “The safety and well-being of our employees is always our primary concern and an investigation is underway with local agencies to ensure a cause is identified and to prevent such incidents. Our thoughts and heartfelt condolences go out to their families, loved ones and all of our ILWU colleagues.”

"I am heartbroken to learn that we lost one of our ILWU brothers in an industrial accident at the Port of Los Angeles while another has been seriously injured,” said Los Angeles 15th District City Councilman Joe Buscaino. “Please keep their families in your prayers and respect their privacy at this time. Today is a tragic reminder of the danger that thousands of workers face every day working on our docks. My office will continue to work with the agencies investigating this accident.”

Oakland to Stay in Port Business

By Karen Robes Meeks

Port of Oakland officials assured shipping executives in a letter sent earlier this week that the port remains committed to growing its maritime business.

This comes shortly after the commission agreed to a term sheet that would allow the Oakland Athletics to move forward on plans for a 35,000-seat stadium with nearby housing at the port’s Howard Terminal.

“In partnership with you, we’ve achieved great things at the Port of Oakland,” the port said in a letter signed by President of the Board of Port Commissioners Ces Butner and Port Executive Director Chris Lytle. “The plan now is to build on our momentum.”

The terms call for the baseball team to complete an environmental impact report and secure public agency approvals within four years before board members would consider a proposed stadium.

The letter attempts to ease concerns about how a ballpark might affect maritime business. Butner and Lytle said that the term sheet already include provisions that would:

• Preserve the port’s ability to widen the Inner Harbor Turning Basin for ships on Oakland Estuary;

• Create a buffer zone between residential uses and nearby seaport activities; and

• Require that a comprehensive transportation and circulation plan be submitted to the port.

“We know that our business partners, customers, and tenants have questions about the proposed development project,” Butner and Lytle said in their letter. “We want to assure you that we understand the issues.”

Seattle’s Maritime Economy

By Karen Robes Meeks

Seattle area fishing and recreational boating industries are significant revenue and job generators, according to a new economic report released by the Port of Seattle.

Approximately $671.3 million and 7,000 direct jobs come from commercial fishing facilities on port property, while almost $729 million and more than 3,600 jobs derive from recreational boating related facilities.

“Port of Seattle properties related to fishing and recreational boating continue to thrive and anchor economic prosperity while providing over 10,000 good paying, family wage jobs in this region,” said Port of Seattle Commissioner Peter Steinbrueck. “This economic impact report confirms that these industries can continue to deliver for decades to come.”

The port owns and runs three facilities that are the regional fishing industry’s core assets: Fishermen’s Terminal, the Maritime Industrial Center and Terminal 91.

These are key to the North Pacific Fisheries Fleet, which include 226 vessels that harvest pollock, Alaskan king crab, groundfish, salmon, and other high value seafoods.

“Commercial fishing continues to provide economic benefits across our region and Alaska,” said Bob Alverson, executive director of the Fishing Vessel Owners Association. “Port facilities like Fishermen’s Terminal anchor this thriving industry from here to the Bering Sea.”

In 2017, about $455 million – 44 percent of all gross earnings from the North Pacific Fisheries – came from Port of Seattle vessels that fished in Alaska.

Meanwhile, the port has four recreational marinas: Shilshole Marina, Harbor Island Marina, Salmon Bay Marina, and Bell Harbor Marina. The biggest one, Shilshole, can accommodate more than 1,400 vessels.

“Recreational boating is a proven job creator and economic driver for our region,” said Vice President and Director of Government Affairs for the Northwest Marine Trade Association Peter Schrappen. “Providing more than 3,600 jobs in our area, marinas are great for our economy as well as a great place to spend time this summer on the water.”

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Bulk for Oakland?

By Karen Robes Meeks

Could bulk shipping operations return to the Port of Oakland for the first time in two decades?

This week, port commissioners authorized talks to start with Vancouver-based Eagle Rock Aggregates on a potential 15-year lease for one berth on Outer Harbor.

According to the port, the Canadian building materials shipper is looking for a vessel berth and 20 acres of adjacent land at the Port’s Outer Harbor Terminal for sand and gravel transport and distribution to construction sites in the Bay Area.

“This is an opportunity for us to perhaps diversify our business,” said John Driscoll, the port’s Maritime Director. “We’ve built the Port of Oakland to be a global gateway for containerized cargo but a steady, divergent revenue stream could be beneficial.”

Seattle Cruise Development Moves Forward

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Seattle has whittled down the number of firms it could partner with on the development and management of a new cruise facility at the north end of Terminal 46 for the 2022 cruise season. The port recently announced the following teams:

• Cruise Industry Leaders Group, a partnership between Royal Caribbean Cruise Ltd., MSC Cruises S.A., Carnival Corporation and SSA Marine, Inc., a subsidiary of Carrix, Inc.

• Global Ports Holding Plc and Civil & Building North America, Inc.

• Ports America and Jacobs Engineering Group

“We are delighted about the prospect of partnering with each of these highly qualified teams,” said Stephanie Jones Stebbins, managing director of the Port’s Maritime Division and leader of the selection team. “Each group showed exciting and innovative ideas in how we can work together to deliver a new cruise terminal that will provide an incredible experience for passengers while benefiting the surrounding community.”

These teams have been asked to respond to the port’s Request for Proposals to be released in June.

Big Numbers for Redwood City

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of Redwood City recently posted record cargo numbers, reaching 2 million metric tons in the third quarter of its current fiscal year and generating $7.1 million in revenue.

It is a 22 percent increase when compared to the same period last year, and nearly $900,000 more than the previous year’s financial performance of $6.2 million.

“Following a record-breaking year in FY 2017-18, these results reinforce the Port’s significance supporting economic growth in Silicon Valley and the Bay Area,” said Lorianna Kastrop, Port Commission chair. “We anticipate strong results to continue through the rest of the fiscal year.”

Vessel calls are also up 29.8 percent from the previous year, moving imports from nations such as Australia, Canada and Mexico, exports to Korea, Vietnam, Malaysia, India and Bangladesh.

The record showing helped the port garner a strong A- bond rating by Standard & Poor’s, which can spark continued reinvestment in the port.

AML VP Takes Board Seat at Highline College

By Karen Robes Meeks

Jake Maenpa, vice president of Alaska Marine Lines, will now serve on the advisory board for the Global Trade and Supply Chain Management Program at the Highline College in Des Moines, Wash. He takes over for Lynden Transport retiree Mike Oliver, who served as a longtime board member.

As one of the six companies donating to support the program, Lynden recently gave $5,000 toward the college's study abroad curriculum, which assists students in following the supply chain on local, national and international levels. Students will study global transportation and trade in China and other locations.