Lower Mississippi River News

31 Jan 2019

Kirby Announces 2018 Q4/FY18 Results, Deal to Buy Cenac's Marine Fleet

Kirby Corporation announced a net loss attributable to Kirby for the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2018 of ($24.4) million, or ($0.41) per share, compared with earnings of $231.3 million, or $3.87 per share, for the 2017 fourth quarter. Excluding certain one-time charges, 2018 fourth quarter net earnings attributable to Kirby were $44.9 million, or $0.75 per share. Consolidated revenues for the 2018 fourth quarter were $721.5 million compared with $708.1 million reported for the 2017 fourth quarter.For the 2018 full year…

27 Jan 2019

Port NOLA Sets Container Record in 2018

 Pic: The Port of New Orleans

The Port of New Orleans (Port NOLA) moved more containers in 2018 than at any time in its history, totaling 591,253 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), up 12.3 percent compared to one year ago.The deep-draft multipurpose port at the center of the world's busiest port system -- Louisiana's Lower Mississippi River said in a press release that the record marks the fifth year in a row Port NOLA has surpassed the half million TEU-mark at its Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal, which…

04 Jan 2019

Grounded Bulker Stops Vessel Traffic Near New Orleans

Vessel traffic in the Lower Mississippi River near New Orleans has come to a stop after a 837-foot bulk carrier ran aground close to mile marker 3.5 Friday morning.The navigation channel has been closed and more than 50 vessels are waiting in queue to transit in or out of the river, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, who added that the number of vessels is larger than normal due to dense fog in the area over the last few days.The Coast Guard said it received a report at 8:32 a.m. that the 837-foot Anglo Alexandria had run aground at mile marker 3.5. There are no current reports of injuries of pollution.The U.K. flagged bulker has activated its vessel response plan (VRP) and a tug is on-scene to assist, the Coast Guard said.The cause of the incident is under investigation.

09 Nov 2018

Master Marine Signs Six Towboats

Master Marine, Inc. has signed Six (6) towboats and has laid the keels for the first two vessels. All Six (6) vessels will be 67’ x 28’ Entech Designs, LLC Sub. M compliant towboats. The first two will be working for Osage Marine Services, Inc., St. Louis, MO. with the rest operating in the lower Mississippi River system for an undisclosed customer. We are very happy to be teaming up with these companies to provide them and their customers the latest towboats and equipment available along with meeting Subchapter M requirements. The first two vessels will be delivered and placed into service, by the summer of 2019 with the additional Four (4) vessels to follow in close succession.Each boat will be powered by a pair of Laborde Products…

14 Sep 2018

APH Pushes Container on Vessel Service for St. Louis Region

The concept Container on Barge vessel underway on left.

Innovative waterway concept vessel could deliver transportation savings for shippers on the Mississippi River. Plans to transport freight via innovative waterway vessels that backers say will revolutionize the inland waterway system and provide significant transportation cost savings for shippers, especially those accessing the Midwest by utilizing the Mississippi River and its tributaries, are underway, according to Sal Litrico, CEO for American Patriot Container Transport, a…

12 Sep 2018

Tug Catches Fire on the Mississippi River

The vessel Jacob Kyle Rusthoven caught fire on the lower Mississippi River near West Helena, Ark., on September 12. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Brandon Giles)

A section of the lower Mississippi River has been closed to vessel traffic after a tug caught fire near mile marker 673 on Wednesday. All crew is reported safe, and there have been no reports of pollution.The U.S. Coast Guard said it is responding to a fire on board the uninspected towing vessel Jacob Kyle Rusthoven near West Helena, Ark. after being notified of the incident at 10:30 a.m.The stricken vessel has been pushed to the Arkansas bank of the river where firefighting efforts continue.

29 Aug 2018

ACL's Newest Riverboat Passes Sea Trials

American Song returning from Sea Trails (Photo: American Cruise Lines)

American Cruise Lines has announced that brand new ship American Song has successfully passed Sea Trials and is now on its way to the “Big Easy.” The first modern riverboat in U.S. history is expected to arrive in New Orleans the first week in September.American Song passed Sea Trials with flying colors and is the second new vessel completed and delivered to American Cruise Lines by Chesapeake Shipbuilding this year. American Harmony, the second modern riverboat in the series…

20 Aug 2018

Mississippi River Ship Channel Deepening Project Moves Forward

Containerships docked at the Port of New Orleans which is located along the Lower Mississippi River and supports deepening the channel’s depth to 50 feet. (Photo: Port of New Orleans)

The Mississippi River Ship Channel could be the first port complex on the Gulf Coast to reach a depth of 50 feet now that the Director’s Report has been signed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Elected officials and industry leaders have long worked to increase the channel’s depth to 50 feet, which is the same depth of the expanded Panama Canal.In signing the Report, Corps of Engineers Director of Civil Works James C. Dalton stated the project is “economically justified and…

01 Aug 2018

New US Riverboat American Song Nearly Complete

American Song (Photo: American Cruise Lines)

American Cruise Lines' new vessel, American Song, the first modern riverboat in U.S. history, is nearly complete.This week, American Song, under its own power, moved from the East Outfitting Basin at Chesapeake Shipbuilding in Salisbury, Md., to the yard’s outfitting bulkhead for the final outfitting touches.American Song is set to make its inaugural cruise October 6, 2018 on the Mississippi River from New Orleans. The vessel will cruise the Line’s Lower Mississippi River itineraries…

12 Jul 2018

E.N. BISSO Acquires PETCHEM

The Christine S operates in Port Canaveral (Photo: E.N. BISSO & SON)

New Orleans based E.N. BISSO & SON, INC. announced it has acquired fellow harbor tug serves provider PETCHEM, INC. of Port Canaveral, Fla., effective June 27, 2018.PETCHEM’s business at Port Canaveral, which includes three tugs and has been active since 1984, will continue to operate as PETCHEM, INC. with all staffing, personnel, equipment and service commitments unchanged.E.N. BISSO has a fleet of 16 tugs and provides ship assist tug service at New Orleans/Lower Mississippi River and Gulfport, Miss.“We are excited about this expansion opportunity as we believe PETCHEM, INC.

17 May 2018

An Unlikely and Remarkable Safety Journey

(Credit: Gregory Thorp)

Late last year, the Transportation Research Board released a major study that was undertaken “in response to the rapid development of domestic sources of energy and questions about the safest ways to move these products.” The Study Committee examined the operational responses of the three primary modes impacted by the fracking revolution – rail, pipeline and maritime. A primary observation of this work was that that the “Marine Transportation System Offers a Model for Robust Safety…

23 Apr 2018

Tanker Spills Oil in Louisiana

© Rene van Quekelberghe / MarineTraffic.com

A Dutch flagged product tanker has reportedly discharged 2,600 gallons of heavy fuel oil into the Mississippi River near Norco, La., Monday. The cause of the spill is under investigation.The U.S. Coast Guard said it is responding to the incident after its watchstanders in New Orleans received a report of the oil discharge from the vessel Iver Exporter at approximately 1 a.m.The source of the discharge near mile marker 126 on the Lower Mississippi River is reported to be secured…

12 Apr 2018

Freighter Spills Oil after Striking Pier near New Orleans

© Patrick Lawson / MarineTraffic.com

A section of the lower Mississippi River is closed to vessel traffic after a Singapore-flagged cargo ship reportedly struck a pier and began leaking oil near New Orleans, Thursday.   The U.S. Coast Guard said it is responding with the help of local agencies. No injuries were reported.   The stricken vessel, Pac Antares, is currently moored at Nashville Avenue Wharf and the leak has reportedly been plugged.   The Mississippi River is closed to vessel movement from mile marker 91 to mile marker 101, the Coast Guard said.   The cause of the incident is under investigation.

07 Mar 2018

Towing Vessel Sinks in Tennessee

(Photo: USCG)

The U.S. Coast Guard is responding to a sunken towing vessel at mile marker 832 of Everett Lake near Dyersburg, Tenn. Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Lower Mississippi River received a report on Tuesday that the motor vessel Ms Nancy C, owned by Choctaw Transportation Company, was in the process of building a tow at a fleeting area when it began taking on water. While attempting to dewater the vessel, the two people aboard departed to retrieve another dewatering pump. Upon their return, the stern of the vessel had sunk. Approximately 3,000 gallons of diesel is estimated to be on board.

22 Feb 2018

Towboat Ablaze on the Lower Mississippi River

The Mississippi River is restricted from mile marker 500 to 520 after a towboat went adrift and caught fire near Greenville, Miss. The U.S. Coast Guard said it responding to a fire on board the vessel Leland Speaks, which was reported to be drifting and ablaze at 7:20 a.m. on Wednesday. The eight people aboard the Leland Speaks at the time of the incident reportedly departed the burning vessel onto towboats in the area. No injuries were reported. The towboat is estimated to have 80,000 gallons of fuel on board and was pushing 21 dry barges, which are not believed to be carrying hazardous material. Nearby towboats were able to gain control of the vessel and push the stricken vessel aground at mile marker 509. There have been no reports of pollution or impacts to the environment.

29 Jan 2018

Riverboat Touring: Status Quo or Ready to Grow?

Credit: Pamela Harding

If you want to book a plush river cruise vacation in America’s heartland – say on the Mississippi or Ohio Rivers – you can do it. The American Queen Steamboat Company’s website offers as many as 13 river cruises in 2018. Certainly, the ‘bourbon cruise,’ aboard the lavish American Duchess sounds like fun. Or, maybe next year you can sign up for the nine-day ‘Derby Cruise.’ And, next year means 2019 because the 2018 cruise is sold out. Maybe the most fun is that passengers themselves…

26 Jan 2018

Mississippi Towing Vessel Fire Extinguished

(U.S. Coast Guard photo by Brandon Giles)

A large fire has been extinguished on board a push boat near Vicksburg, Miss., the U.S. Coast Guard said. The fire broke out in the engine room of uninspected towing vessel George King near mile marker 390 on the lower Mississippi River on Thursday morning. The nine crew on board were able to safely disembark, and no injuries or pollution have been reported. The Coast Guard said it is working with local agencies to continue monitoring the vessel.

25 Jan 2018

Towing Vessel Ablaze on the Lower Mississippi

(U.S. Coast Guard photo)

A push boat is ablaze on the lower Mississippi after a fire reportedly broke out in the vessel’s engine room Thursday morning. The U.S. Coast Guard said it is responding to a fire aboard uninspected towing vessel George King at mile marker 390 on the lower Mississippi River near Vicksburg, Miss. Other local agencies are also involved in emergency response efforts. The nine crewmembers aboard George King were able to safely disembark to the dry cargo barges the vessel was pushing. No injuries have been reported. The George King reported there is 65,000 gallons of diesel on board.

02 Aug 2017

The Evolving ATB Jones Act Business Model

ATB Corpus Christi/Petrochem Supplier (Image Credit: US Shipping Corp)

Today’s ATB play seemingly has legs for the long haul, as operators build and market needs fluctuate. The refined product trades are always in flux. Similarly, the supply patterns for products (and for chemicals derived from oil refining) are subject to constant change. At the same time, the distribution of refined petroleum products sees great benefit from the efficiency of Articulated Tug Barges (ATBs), which have the flexibility to adjust to dynamic supply programs between refineries and myriad distribution facilities dotting the coastline. It wasn’t always like that.

12 May 2017

Riverboat American Duchess to Launch in August

Artist rendering of American Duchess, the company’s latest riverboat (Image: American Queen Steamboat Company)

The American Queen Steamboat Company, owner and operator of the American Queen and American Empress, will launch service on its new American Duchess when it sets sail from New Orleans on Aug. 14, 2017, following its christening a day earlier. The all-suite, 166-guest American Duchess will be the first purpose-built boutique paddle wheeler offering guests the largest suites on the Mississippi River. The American Duchess follows in the pedigree of the company’s namesake American Queen and will offer overnight stays from New Orleans.

29 Mar 2017

New Mississippi Container Terminal Planned

Image: Plaquemines Port Harbor & Terminal District

Plans have been put in motion to develop a new intermodal container terminal on the lower Mississippi River. Designed to service the largest ocean carriers, the new 1,000 acre container terminal will be capable of docking vessels up to 20,000 TEU with deep-water access and 21,600 linear feet of waterfront allow for multiple ocean and APCT vessels to be accommodated simultaneously. The container port, located between mile 50 and 55 on the Mississippi River, will be the southern-most full service port complex on the river…

09 Mar 2017

Louisiana Dredging Outlook

Photo: Magnolia Dredge

When maritime stakeholders think about dredging, they typically first conjure up visions of harbor deepening projects to accommodate those giant, post-Panamax boxships. Conversely, inland players hope for maintenance dredging in the heartland to keep the nation’s 31,000 cargo barges afloat as they head for the coast. But, there is much more to it than that. In Louisiana, dredging, of course, keeps Louisiana's waterways open for navigation, provides material for coastal restoration and helps industrial plants with drainage. The biggest projects are sponsored by the U.S.

09 Mar 2017

Towboat Capsizes in Kentucky

A towing vessel has reportedly capsized and sank at 11:35 p.m., Wednesday, at a pier near Wickliffe, Ky., mile marker 951 on the Lower Mississippi River. The U.S. Coast Guard is responding.   The UTV Tom Rogers had about 3,500 gallons of diesel on board at the time of the incident.   SWS Environmental Services, an oil spill response organization, will conduct assessments of the water and land for any potential diesel release.   McKinney Salvage has been contracted to remove the vessel.   The cause of the incident is under investigation.

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