• ITVI.USA
    13,754.510
    83.820
    0.6%
  • OTRI.USA
    21.920
    -0.140
    -0.6%
  • OTVI.USA
    13,721.420
    82.630
    0.6%
  • TLT.USA
    2.840
    0.040
    1.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.ATLPHL
    2.480
    -0.170
    -6.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.CHIATL
    3.070
    -0.210
    -6.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.DALLAX
    1.370
    -0.090
    -6.2%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXDAL
    2.280
    -0.210
    -8.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.PHLCHI
    1.900
    -0.070
    -3.6%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXSEA
    2.720
    -0.270
    -9%
  • WAIT.USA
    127.000
    0.000
    0%
  • ITVI.USA
    13,754.510
    83.820
    0.6%
  • OTRI.USA
    21.920
    -0.140
    -0.6%
  • OTVI.USA
    13,721.420
    82.630
    0.6%
  • TLT.USA
    2.840
    0.040
    1.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.ATLPHL
    2.480
    -0.170
    -6.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.CHIATL
    3.070
    -0.210
    -6.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.DALLAX
    1.370
    -0.090
    -6.2%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXDAL
    2.280
    -0.210
    -8.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.PHLCHI
    1.900
    -0.070
    -3.6%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXSEA
    2.720
    -0.270
    -9%
  • WAIT.USA
    127.000
    0.000
    0%
American ShipperShipping

Great Lakes shipping breaks winter slumber

The first two U.S.-flag Great Lakes vessels departed the Port of Duluth-Superior, Minn. on Monday, signaling the start of the 2015 commercial shipping season.

   The first two U.S.-flag Great Lakes vessels were on schedule to depart the Port of Duluth-Superior, Minn. on Monday, signaling the start of the 2015 commercial shipping season at the western end of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway system.
   The vessel John G. Munson departed its winter berth at Fraser Shipyards in Superior on Sunday to pick up a 24,000-short-ton load of iron ore pellets from the CN Duluth Dock. The vessel is destined for Gary, Ind. 
   Similarly, the Mesabi Miner left the Superior Midwest Energy Terminal on Monday with about 57,000 tons of coal for the power plant at Taconite Harbor. After making that delivery, the vessel will return to the Twin Ports for a couple of days of scheduled maintenance work and to load its next shipment of coal.
   “While Lake Superior looks bright blue in the early spring sunshine here in Duluth-Superior, there is still a significant amount of ice cover on the eastern edge of the Lake – two-to-three feet thick from Whitefish Point to the St. Marys River,” the Port of Duluth-Superior said in a statement. “As such, U.S. Coast Guard cutter Alder will be working in tandem with [the large icebreaker] Mackinaw to lay tracks and provide escorts for vessels as needed through that eastern ice pack to and from the Soo Locks.” 
   The Soo Locks offer a gateway for lake carriers to move raw materials like iron ore, coal, limestone, cement and salt between Lake Superior and Lakes Michigan, Huron and Erie. 
   “Against what seemed like insurmountable odds with everything Mother Nature threw at us from beginning to end, the Port of Duluth-Superior wrapped up the 2014 shipping season a full 2.3 percent ahead of expectations, having moved over 37.5 million short tons of cargo,” added Vanta Coda, Duluth Seaway Port Authority executive director. “There are still some formidable ice challenges along the Great Lakes-Seaway, but nowhere near what the fleets were facing at this same time last year.”
   Close to 1,000 ships call the Port of Duluth-Superior each year, moving about 38 million tons iron ore, coal, grain, limestone, cement, salt and project cargoes.

Chris Gillis

Located in the Washington, D.C. area, Chris Gillis primarily reports on regulatory and legislative topics that impact cross-border trade. He joined American Shipper in 1994, shortly after graduating from Mount St. Mary’s College in Emmitsburg, Md., with a degree in international business and economics.