US-flag Lakes Cargos Up in November
U.S.-flag Great Lakes freighters (lakers) moved 9.3 million tons of dry-bulk cargo in November, an increase of 6.2 percent compared to a year ago, according to figures from the Lake Carriers’ Association (LCA).
The total would have been higher, the LCA said, but there were a number of weather-related delays. In fact, the November float actually represents a decrease of nearly 18 percent compared to October’s volume.
Iron ore for the steel industry totaled 4.6 million tons in November, an increase of 22.4 percent compared to a year ago. That increase allowed the year-to-date total for iron ore to inch passed 2013’s end-of-November tally by 350,000 tons.
Coal cargos totaled 1.9 million tons, a decrease of 16.6 percent compared to a year ago. Limestone cargos registered a slight increase – 45,000 tons.
The fleet’s year-to-date total – 80.5 million tons – remains nearly 2 percent off last year’s pace. Despite higher water levels and the activation of three additional hulls, the U.S.-flag Lakes fleet has yet to fully overcome the cargo shortfalls suffered last winter and this spring when glacial ice packed the shipping lanes.