By Paul Scott Abbott
From multimillion-dollar rail cars to huge power generators, cargo that is too large or too heavy to be transported in containers is well-positioned to move through the Port of New York and New Jersey.
"While the Port of New York and New Jersey is best-known as a containerport, the port has a lot to offer shippers of over-dimensional cargo," said Steve Liberti Sr., President of Port Newark-based Harbor Freight Transport Corp., one of a number of firms specializing in the expert handling of heavy-lift projects and other non-containerized cargo through the port.
Weeks Marine regularly offloads project cargo at the Port of New York and New Jersey.
Berth 23, on the north side of the Port Newark Channel offers on-dock rail and direct access for trucks without height restrictions. Furthermore, the weight-bearing capacity at Berth 23 has been fortified to handle 1,000 pounds per square foot—twice the capability of a typical container berth.
On the channel's south side, Berth 8 and Berth 10 are currently being reconstructed to also withstand 1,000 pounds per square foot, augmenting the ability of Port Newark facilities to accommodate projects and overweight bulk cargos. The reconstruction is set for summer 2009 completion, according to Aaron Sherburne, The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey's Supervising Marine Terminal Representative.
These and other Port Newark facilities, including Berth 17, are regularly used by movers of project cargo and are available at competitive rates through what Sherburne described as "a really customer-service oriented transaction." Customers benefit from a streamlined process that doesn't involve hurdles often associated with moving this type of cargo.
Jason L. Marchioni, Manager of the Heavy Lift and Salvage Division of Cranford, N.J.- based Weeks Marine Inc., said Berth 23's on-dock Conrail tracks, which provide direct links to the extensive CSX and Norfolk Southern rail networks, provide a significant benefit in the movement of project cargos, which often are too heavy to be moved by over-the-road trucks.
"The great thing about Port Newark is it has the public rail at Berth 23," said Marchioni, whose company has been moving noncontainerized cargo through the port since the firm's founding as Weeks Stevedoring Co. in 1919.
Weeks Marine, the largest U.S. marine contractor, deploys about 50 floating cranes in the New York/New Jersey area. The floating cranes, with ability to rotate 360 degrees and with mooring spuds that secure them to the underwater bed, are specifically equipped to facilitate swift, safe moves. The cranes are rated to handle loads of as many as 500 tons each.
Among the cargos moved by Weeks' floating cranes are dozens of power transformers that arrive at the port on oceangoing vessels from throughout the world and are destined for such customers as Con Edison and National Grid. The units for National Grid are transloaded to Weeks' barges that float them to Boston.
Weeks Marine also regularly offloads yachts shipped across the Atlantic Ocean from Great Britain by Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics, as well as power generation units and other overweight and/or oversized pieces shipped across the Pacific Ocean by Hanjin Shipping Co. Ltd.
Donjon Marine Co. Inc. boasts the highestcapacity lift crane on the Eastern Seaboard—its 1,000-ton-rated-capacity Chesapeake 1000—plus other cranes with 350-ton and 150-ton capacities that are used to handle project cargos through the Port of New York and New Jersey. Cargos handled by Donjon cranes include General Electric Co. and Siemens generator units, often weighing as many as 400 tons apiece, that are imported via oceangoing vessels.
"Things are getting bigger, with 350- to 400-ton units now the norm and not the exception," said John A. Witte Jr., Executive Vice President of Hillside, N.J.-based Donjon Marine, which has been providing heavy-lift cargo services through the Port of New York and New Jersey since the firm was founded in 1966. "To continue to compete, you've got to have the ability to go with the times.
"The Port of New York and New Jersey is one of the larger and certainly most active ports in terms of heavy-lift cargos," Witte pointed out. "It is one place where there is the necessary expertise to handle these cargos."
Harbor Freight Transport's Liberti echoed Witte's sentiments concerning the importance of experience in handling non-containerized cargo, noting that it demands special skills to move such items as the 12-foot-high, 35-footlong mega glass panels that his firm has been offloading from vessels, storing and delivering as demanded to a New York City building site.
Liberti said another advantage Harbor Freight Transport offers is that it operates from a 150,000-square-foot warehouse, with 17-foot-high ceilings, on a 10-acre tract that is within the Port Newark complex, so oversized and/or overweight cargo can be stored without having to go outside port gates.
Because of the proliferation of containership sailings in and out of Port of New York and New Jersey terminals, many nonconventional cargos that in years past might have moved on breakbulk vessels are now being lashed to flat racks and transported on decks of containerships, Liberti noted.
Some traditional breakbulk cargos, including steel coils, are being expertly blocked and braced and shipped within containers that may weigh more than 35,000 pounds for their containership voyages, he added.
Among the largest and most valuable project cargos moving through the Port of New York and New Jersey in recent months are the 27 Bombardier Inc. electric locomotives that began arriving in late 2008 from Germany aboard Wallenius Wilhelmsen vessels. The units are each valued at between $4.5 million and $5 million; each is 64 feet long, nearly 10 feet wide and 99 tons in weight.
Iselin, N.J.-based Ports America Inc. stevedores have been moving the locomotives off the ships and onto the Berth 23 rail tracks, from which they travel on their own power to facilities of NJ TRANSIT, which is putting them to use in the nation's largest statewide public transportation system.
Airplane fuselages, which arrive from Europe on Atlantic Container Line (ACL) vessels, are among other recent cargos handled by Ports America at Berth 23, according to Donald E. Rupert, Ports America's Vice President of Sales and Marketing.
Robert A. Gaffney, The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey's Manager of Industry and Labor Relations, noted that the ability of firms and facilities to provide for the efficient movement of heavy-lift cargo via ocean vessel, rail and truck are a key to the port's success in this critical sector.
"With the services available to handle over-dimensional cargos from vessel to rail, with rail able to move these cargos to destinations throughout the nation and with specialized motor carriers to truck these cargos," Gaffney said, "the Port of New York and New Jersey is well positioned to continue to be a leader among heavy-lift ports."
By Beth Hughes
The Department of Homeland Security's Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism validated The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, meaning the port now holds the highest level in the voluntary government-business initiative.
"The true benefit accrues for our shippers," says Beth Rooney, Manager, Port Security. She emphasizes the validation awarded December 23, 2008, is a selling point for the port's terminal operators as well. "Shippers want to see this because they get the real tangible benefits."
While increased security is the biggest benefit, the most tangible is the amount oftime, and therefore, money, saved.
Launched in November 2001, with seven major importers as members, C-TPAT now has certified partners from every segment of the trade community that have been accepted into the program, according to C-TPAT. These include sea, rail and highway carriers, licensed U.S. customs brokers, U.S. freight consolidators, ocean transportation intermediaries and others, such as marine port authority and terminal operators. These companies account for over 50 percent (by value) of what is imported into the United States, according to C-TPAT.
At its core, the C-TPAT program establishes clear supply chain security criteria for members to meet and then bestows benefits to certified C-TPAT member categories, including a reduced likelihood of U.S. Customs and Border Protection inspections and priority, front-of-the-line processing for CBP inspections when possible. Translated to numbers, that means being four to six times less likely to incur a security or compliance exam, according to Rooney. Of the 3.1 million sea containers that moved through the Port in 2007, one of every three was examined. "If everyone in the chain is certified, the chances of that are reduced," she says.
Nor is obtaining C-TPAT certification limited to U.S. shippers. Benefits accrue to all — from the smaller outfits moving 1,000 containers a year to big-box retailers moving hundreds of thousands of containers, according to Rooney.
"You want to get certified first and foremost to increase national security," says Rooney. "The secondary goal is that this is a customer service benefit—that's the port's perspective. And from a customer's perspective, it saves time, and that saves money."
The port's terminal operators including APM, Port Newark Container Terminal, Maher Terminals and Global are also C-TPAT members, even as they adhere to the stringent Maritime Transportation Security Act of 2002 regulates them.
"It's really a partnership with Customs, saying we're going to do certain things, and for people who're doing business with us, it's something really nice to see—that there's a standard that's used," says George Reynolds, Global Terminal's Director of Safety and Security.
Frank Chimento, who oversees safety and security for PNCT, said finding the time to go through the process is worthwhile. "It's a matter of completing the assessment, because you have to provide a security assessment of your facility, and the vulnerability. But once you set aside some quiet time to complete the assessment, it's easy."
The next step is the physical assessment, when government inspectors come on-site. "They just want to verify that what you want is what you're doing," said Chimento. The inspection covers lighting, fencing, delivery and receiving processes, and other procedures.
"The only other time you need to spend on getting the certification, is the actual physical verification, where you're walking the walk the so to speak," Chimento said of the site inspection.
PNCT went through the process for several reasons. All are common to other terminal operators and others. "We got certified to be in compliance, and to work with Customs in helping keep America secure and safe," he said.
Then there was the issue of customer service. "The customers, since the inception of C-TPAT, the customers have actually required our certification number, so that they could do business with us. They belong to C-TPAT and their customers belong to C-TPAT. It's part of the supply chain, keeping that chain secure."
Rooney concurred that the validation process for the port took time. "Normally, a company's initial validation will occur within three years of becoming a certified member of C-TPAT," Rooney explained. "We first became members of C-TPAT in August 2004. We were then certified in January 2007." The Port's validation certification was issued December 23, 2008.
And certification has its costs, mostly the time spent to fulfill the requirements. But Rooney points out the benefits are clear: "You're creating a chain of trust with all your trading partners."
Indeed, when the University of Virginia on behalf of U.S. Customs and Border Protection conducted a survey of 1,700 C-TPAT certified members in 2007—more than half of them U.S. importers, including some of the nation's largest retailers—the responses were positive.
The survey found that 81.3 percent indicated that their ability to assess and manage supply chain risk had been strengthened as a result of joining C-TPAT. More than half (56.8 percent) of the members indicated that C-TPAT benefits either outweighed the costs or were about the same.
"It's a good thing," says Mark Hanafee, who oversees safety and security for APM on the East and Gulf coasts. "Anything we do to secure the supply chain is beneficial."
Four new ZPMC container cranes have been added to APM Terminals
Seaboard Marine has moved its port operations to American Stevedoring's Red Hook terminal in Brooklyn from Philadelphia.
Although Seaboard's vessels will call on the Red Hook terminal in Brooklyn where cargo can be delivered and received, cargo can also be delivered and received at ASI's Port Newark terminal, which is linked by a cross-harbor barge service, said a spokesman for Seaboard Marine. At Port Newark, ASI operates a 3-acre terminal, which includes a container/barge handling facility. The 60-acre Red Hook terminal that ASI has leased since 1993, has six active container cranes and two major bulk handling yards.
"The convenience and personalized service at the family—run Red Hook facility should benefit our customers greatly and provide a platform to further grow and develop our Caribbean trade lanes," said Edward Gonzalez, President and CEO of Seaboard Marine when service began.
The line has some 40 vessels, each capable of handing about 900 TEUs. The new Red Hook service became effective with the October 1 sailing of the M/V Vega Nicholas. Most traffic is between the New York-New Jersey area and the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Jamaica. Seaboard's weekly sailings depart from Brooklyn every Wednesday.
In both locations Seaboard Marine will have access to rail and highway networks. Thus the move to Red Hook will cut costs and maximize transportation logistics for Seaboard.
The biggest single import item is Red Stripe beer with lemon juice, fresh avocados, cocoa beans, coconut milk and medical devices rounding out the Top Ten. Reefer, specifically fresh apples, frozen poultry and other products, stands out in an export list dominated by household goods for resale. Indeed, the company is handling more reefer than ever before, according to the spokesman.
"The specific advantage to Red Hook is that if a customer is on Long Island, Brooklyn or Queens, truckers don't have to cross the bridges," said the spokesman. "It's the same for our customers who are receiving in New Jersey."
The Port of New York and New Jersey's ExpressRail Elizabeth facility marked a major milestone on February 18, 2009, by transporting its three millionth cargo container by rail, which has removed about 5 million truck trips from the road in the 18 years since the on-dock rail system was launched.
ExpressRail Elizabeth is operated by Millennium Rail, a joint venture between Maher Terminals and APM Terminals. Carmine Cipoletti, Director Rail Operations and Steve Kolodziej, Manager, Rail Operations were both on hand for the new milestone.
ExpressRail Elizabeth began service in 1991 as a way to move cargo containers from the ship to the marketplace by rail rather than by truck. Currently, about 12 percent of cargo containers are transported by rail. The Port Authority has invested $600 million to expand and upgrade the port's rail system, which will provide the capacity to move 1.5 million containers a year when completed in 2012.
Two expansion projects will be completed in 2009—the addition of a second lead track into the ExpressRail Elizabeth facility allowing for simultaneous arrival and departure of two trains, and the completion of additional support track west of Corbin Street in the port to allow marshalling of trains to a single destination, providing for a quicker and more efficient movement of the containers.
Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, "Almost 20 years ago this agency had the vision to begin investing in an on-dock rail system. That investment is paying dividends today - enabling shippers to move their cargo to market efficiently, supporting port-related jobs and economic activity, and reducing the number of trucks on our local roads."
Port Authority Executive Director Chris Ward said, "Providing an efficient, cost-effective rail system to move goods from the port to the store shelves is a great benefit to shippers, and it's equally beneficial to the environment. Since the port's rail system was launched 18 years ago, ExpressRail has removed about 5 million trucks from the roads, which means less pollution, better air quality, and fewer traffic delays."
During 2008, the Port of New York and New Jersey set a new record for the ExpressRail system—which includes ExpressRail Elizabeth and ExpressRail Staten Island—transporting 377,827 containers for the year, a nearly 6 percent increase over 2007.
Dr. Nariman Behravesh, chief economist and executive vice president for IHS Global Insight, spoke with members of the Port community at the Annual Port Economic Briefing in October as the worsening economic outlook for the United States dominated the news. At that time, the distinguished economic forecaster said the situation would get worse before it got better. Recovery was unlikely until 2010.
At his presentation, he pointed out three key factors contributing to the bleak economic outlook: the collapse in commodity prices, including oil, the drying up of global credit, and the contraction in world trade. "Even the countries that are not commodity exporters, and are not hurt by the lack of credit, are hurt by the decline of exports. Asian nations are getting clobbered by the collapse in world trade and world export," said Behravesh.
PortViews recently contacted Dr. Behravesh for an updated forecast.
In October, you said it was unlikely that we would see a repeat of the Great Depression or a Japan-style "lost decade." Is that still your belief?
Yes, while this is the worst recession in the post-war period, it is still a far cry from the Great Depression.
How will the financial rescue/stimulus packages help?
The financial rescue/stimulus packages will revive the economy and trade finance and will help boost trade.
In your Fall presentation, you said that the average downturn after a big banking crises lasts four years, yet you spoke of a return to growth, albeit a small one, beginning late in 2009, a modest recovery in 2010 and a sharper rebound in 2011. Is the switch to growth in late 2009 the point from which we start counting the four years, or do we look back to an earlier point, say October 2008?
Given the strong policy response in the United States, we expect that the recovery will occur in two, not four years, with the starting point being early 2008.
Commodity prices have fallen dramatically since their peaks in 2008, oil in particular. In October, you suggested they could fall another 20 to 30 percent from levels that were already down 40 to 50 percent from previous highs. Are the prices done falling, and what does this rapid decline mean for the shipping industry?
Commodity prices may ease a little more—they have fallen by 70 to 80 percent. The drop in oil prices will help the shipping industry. The drop in other commodity prices will, in time, boost demand.
How is the recession likely to change U.S. trading partners?
U.S. trading partners in all parts of the world are being hurt. However, once the world comes out of this recession, Asia is likely to continue to be the star region of the world, with higher than average GDP and trade growth.
Yet recent figures show the GDP of Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan falling by an average annualized rate of about 15 percent in the final quarter of 2008, with exports falling at 50 percent in an annualized rate. In Japan, exports fell 35 percent in the 12 months to December. Imports throughout the region have fallen as domestic spending has declined.
Asia is very export dependent.It is not a surprise that as world trade has plummeted, these economies are suffering. However, once the world economy recovers, then trade with this region should also rebound strongly.
Can you provide any near term bright spots?
The U.S. and China will be the first to recover, either very late this year or early next year. It's going to be an awful year in terms of trade and shipping, probably the worst in six decades, in terms of the drop in shipping. Things will probably stabilize over the summer, with weak growth, then pick up in 2010.
The numbers bear him out. December was the 18th consecutive months of annual declines in cargo volume at the nation's major retail container ports, and the rate of decline is expected to be precipitous for the first six months of 2009, according to the February Port Tracker report prepared by the National Retail Federation and HIS Global Insight.
National volume for the first six months of 2009 is forecast at 6.6 million TEU, down 11.8 percent from the 7.5 million TEU seen during the same period in 2008. Port trade forecasts in the report cover all containerized trade, not just retail goods.
Final data for 2008 showed U.S. volume for the year at 15.2 million TEU, compared with 16.5 million TEU in 2007, a decline of 7.9 percent and the lowest total since 2004, when 14 million TEU moved through the ports, according to the report.
Mix into this stone soup the loss of 598,000 U.S. jobs in January, bringing the total to 3.6 million jobs lost since the beginning of the recession in December 2007 and the slowdowns in Europe and Asia.
CSAV is pleased to announce that PACAR— independent and fully operated service between Asia and the Caribbean—will expand its coverage to offer now a direct connection from Asia to the USEC ports of Savannah and Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal.
The PACAR, recently upgraded to a weekly fixed service, will now operate nine vessels with capacity between 2500 and 3000 TEUs. It will will offer this new connection from Asia to USEC as from M/V Norasia Alps voyage 904 at Ningbo commencing January 26th.
The port rotation will be as follows:
Go ahead, try this at home: Teach an engaging lesson on the global economy and world trade in way that works on television, online and radio.
That was the challenge the British Broadcasting Corporation's business and finance team set itself. They solved it by attaching a GPS responder to a NYK-provided container painted unmissable red and letting the forces of trade have their way. The container arrived at the New York Container Terminal in late December on its round-the-world journey, departing for Santos, Brazil in January with a cargo of mixed commodities.
A BBC documentary traces the journey of a container around the world, including a stop at New York Container Terminal.
"We coordinated it here," said Griff Lynch, vice president of operations at NYCT on Staten Island near the Goethals Bridge. "It came off a vessel here, it was delivered it to a customer, it came back empty, and we made sure it was staged and ready for the next customer."
The container's cargo—plastic spray bottles and digital bathroom scales—went to a Big Lots store on Long Island, according to the BBC Web site.
All in a day's work. Except that by the time the container arrived in the Port of New York- New Jersey, it was a multi-media starlet with enthusiastic followers who tracked its progress, posted pictures and commented on blogs, a response far more enthusiastic that anyone expected. After all, this is a standard 40-foot container just doing what comes naturally.
Does all the fuss mean that containers, the darlings of architects designing innovative housing, are suddenly sexy? "I don't know about that, " said Lynch with a laugh. "Things like this have raised the awareness about trade. People are amazed by the scope of the shipping industry. The coordination and the logistics involved make it seem seamless, and it's such a big part of our economy. It's been fascinating to see."
The project, called The Box in homage to Marc Levinson's book of the same name, which describes how shipping containers made the world smaller and the world economy bigger, tapped the logistical and planning expertise of the Container Shipping Information Service.
The Box started its journey in Greenock, Scotland. Loaded with 14,120 bottles of 12-year old Chivas it moved onto Southampton, England where it was loaded on ship that left for Shanghai on Sept. 8, according to the BBC Web site.
After the Suez Canal, a routine stopover in Singapore, the container was unloaded in China where it was loaded with a variety of health and personal care products, beauty and gardening supplies for a U.S. retailer. After a stop in Sendai, Japan, the container arrived in Los Angeles, where it was put on a train for New York.
Although a key component of the container project is education. "Schools were involved and kids came to the terminal in China," said Doug Cole, the spokesman for NYK. "We did a great program in Los Angeles." The school holidays interfered with that in New York.
Instead, the container had a little work done—on its GPS unit. "For whatever reason, the battery had died" Cole said. That meant the BBC trackers posting movements on the Web site had been following the container using the GPS on whatever ship was traveling. Then, when the container traveled by rail to New York from Los Angeles, "we gave them the coordinates of the towns the train was passing through," said Cole. "Every 12 hours, we were able to give that to the BBC, and they plugged them in."
At a Pennsylvania distribution center, the container was transferred to a truck for the final trip to NYCT, according to the BBC Web site. NYCT coordinated activity at the Port.
Loaded with general commodities, the container left the Port on January 12 for a 21-day journey to Santos, Brazil, its GPS unit still not working properly, according to Cole.
"NYK will continue to monitor it," said Anne Kappel, vice-president of the World Shipping Council and CSIS representative. More events are in the works, as befits a celebrity container. "We've had some discussions at CSIS about what we should do when it comes back, to the UK, sometime in the summer," she said.
In the meantime, GPS problems aside, the container moves onward. "BBC has done a wonderful job promoting it," said Kappel. "The Web site is comprehensive, you can track it, it's inactive, there's a story at each location, and people are sending in pictures as they sight this thing going around the world—which I think is great."
To continue following The Box, go to bbc.co.uk/thebox.
The Port Authority is currently investing approximately $600 million to upgrade the port rail facilities, including ExpressRail Elizabeth. The agency's new incentive program is designed to keep the port competitive.
To stimulate even greater use of the Port Authority's ExpressRail system, the agency's Board of Commissioners approved at its January meeting an incentive program to encourage shippers using the Port of New York and New Jersey to transport even more cargo by rail.
During 2008, the Port of New York and New Jersey set a new record for its on-dock rail system, transporting 377,827 containers for the year, a nearly 6 percent increase over 2007. The agency is currently investing approximately $600 million to upgrade the port rail facilities in Newark, Elizabeth and Staten Island, which ultimately will allow it to accommodate 1.5 million containers a year.
The new program will provide an incentive of $25 per container shipped by rail to any ocean carrier that increases the number of containers it transports over its 2008 levels.
The Port Authority receives $52 in revenue for each cargo container transported by the ExpressRail system. Under the incentive program, if an ocean carrier increases its rail cargo business in 2009 over 2008 levels, it would pay $27 for each additional container it ships by rail over that amount.
Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, "Our $600 million investment in an efficient and sustainable ExpressRail system is a critical factor in our port's number-one standing on the East Coast. This incentive program will keep our port competitive and ensure that it remains a leading source of jobs and economic activity in our region, despite the challenging economic climate."
Port Authority Executive Director Chris Ward said, "The competition for port business is intense, and we must find creative ways to maintain our competitive edge during difficult economic times. With jobs and economic activity on the line, we believe this incentive—coupled with our multibilliondollar investment in rail infrastructure—will allow us to maintain our standing as the East Coast's No. 1 port."
"Clearly, 2009 will present challenges, and together, we will continue to work hard to meet the demands of world trade in the New Year and well beyond: safely, securely and sustainably…"
Richard M. Larrabee Director, Port Commerce
As our nation continues to advance in 2009 amid economic uncertainty, you and all our partners who have played an integral role in growing our port and our region can be reassured that The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey's commitment to meet the demands of future global trade remains steadfast.
Any of us who have been in and around the maritime industry for a significant period of time are well aware that commerce, like the tides, is subject to ebbs and flows. We know that it is imperative that we remain focused on our long-term objectives so that we will be properly prepared to handle increasing flows of trade to come. They will come, and we at the Port Authority want to take all possible steps to be ready.
Thus, we're moving forward confidently with our capital plan—$246 million allocated for 2009. We are maintaining our dedication to make a 50-foot-deep channel a reality, to enhancing terminal facility efficiencies, to augmenting rail and roadway infrastructure and to expanding warehouse and distribution facilities.
One example from which shippers will benefit in the coming year is completion of a second lead track at ExpressRail Elizabeth, part of an overall $600 million expansion of the port's ExpressRail system that would increase total on-dock rail throughput capacity to more than 1 million containers a year—more than doubling current capacity.
With completion in 2009 of the Bayonne Bridge study we will be committed to proceed with the most favorable alternative for the top-priority channel crossing between New Jersey and Staten Island terminal facilities.
Our "green" policies for the Port of NY/NJ remain in the forefront, as they do for all Port Authority facilities. This commitment is embodied in the Board's November 20, adoption of a statement of principles for improving air quality. One effort in that regard is our work with Carnival Cruise Lines to allow ships docked at the Brooklyn Cruise Terminal to shut off their engines and run on nonpolluting alternative shoreside power.
Clearly, 2009 will present challenges, and together, we will continue to work hard to meet the demands of world trade in the New Year and well beyond: safely, securely and sustainably.
May the New Year bring you good health and success.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey would like to thankeveryone for ensuring successful TWIC compliance on March 23, 2009. The agency has two more deadlines that we need to bring to your attention.
If your drivers have not registered their TWIC SeaLink yet, they should proceed to the SeaLink office before heading to the marine terminals on their next trip to the Port of New York and New Jersey. Drivers who fail to register their TWIC with SeaLink by April 14, 2009 will have their SeaLink suspended.
Drivers who have completed the security threat assessment and are using a paper receipt because their TWIC cards are in production, need to pick up their TWIC and return to the SeaLink office to register it with the Port Authority before April 24. In accordance with the US Coast Guard policy, the paper receipt will expire on April 24. If you have a paper receipt because of a forgotten PIN, the paper receipt expires six weeks from the day it was issued. You must pick up your replacement TWIC and return to the SeaLink office to register it within that time frame.
By Beth Hughes
How were the NY Waterway ferry crews able to react instantly when US Airways Flight 1549 landed in the Hudson River on January 15? How did they save 142 of the 155 people on board, including two babies, in a rescue in which there was no loss of life?
"Our captains and deckhands did not wait for orders," said NY Waterway founder Arthur E. Imperatore. "They responded quickly and surely."
"I can't even find the words to explain how important it is to conduct drills," says Captain Vincent LuCante. With the company for 12 years, he now oversees all the captains who command the company's 34 vessels, their crew and the drills. "We could not have been as successful with the rescue and as fast to respond if we didn't drill the way we do."
He reports to Robert Matticola, the company's director of homeland security, safety and compliance, who says the drills are both internal on a monthly basis covering scenarios such as man overboard (they practice with a 180 pound dummy), CPR and first aid, fire, abandon ship, security breaches—and external, exercises that involve coordination with local, state and federal law enforcement and emergency response agencies responding to scenarios such a live bombs.
"We conduct drills every month," says Matticola. Where the law requires quarterly drills, his crews drill more frequently. "We pick a boat and do spot checks at random."
He and LuCante review evaluations of each drill conducted by the captains and their crew. "Everything is documented," says Lucante. And knowing what they do well and what needs improvement continues to be a boon. The company has been involved several rescue operations including people who fall overboard, pleasure craft in distress, the 9/11 evacuation of 150,000 people, and more than 125,000 in the 2003 blackout.
The meetings of the Area Maritime Security Committee coordinated by the Coast Guard and the Port Authority help everyone operating on the river get to know each other, according to Matticola. Through the Training & Exercise Sub Committee, the AMSC undertakes both tabletop and realtime exercises several times a year. Both kinds of drills help everyone involved learn how various entities operate, he adds.
Among the drill participants are the U.S. Coast Guard, the Fire Department of New York, the New York Police Department, Port Authority Police Department, the New Jersey Transit Police, New Jersey State Police, the Weehawken, Hoboken, Jersey City police, the North Hudson Regional Fire Department and many other local EMS and fire departments.
For example, from August through December, N.Y. Waterways went through three tactical response exercises—yes, SWAT teams were involved—that entailed outsiders getting to know the facilities and personalities of N.Y. Waterways. "That contributed a lot to the success of the Flight 1549 rescue," says Matticola. "They didn't have to take time to get oriented."
Indeed, it was during one of those exercises that NY Waterways made sure that emergency responders programmed the exact location of the Weehawken terminal, which can be difficult to find, into their GPS units.
That meant the Red Cross and various emergency medical service teams knew where to go, in a situation where every second counted working in the 35-degree waters of the Hudson River.
The constant drilling paid off for the ferry crews who responded to Flight 1549. "You can drill for years, you can do drills like your whole entire career and you'll be getting bored out of your tree but when something like this happens, 100 people sit back and say "'Thank God we do this,'" says LuCante. "I bet you a good percentage of the crews were surprised at how well they responded."
The timing and location of where Flight 1549 landed was almost too perfect for a drill. At 3:30 p.m., all the crews were in Weehawken, readying for the evening rush. The flight landed between the docks used as the company's main ferry terminal and its maintenance facility. "The boats just had to turn around and head to the plane," Matticola says. "Our first ferry was there in a little over three minutes, and a total of 14 N.Y. Waterways ferries responded to the crash, some arriving from Manhattan.
Seven of our ferries removed almost all the passengers within seven minutes."
At 3: 30 p.m., Captain Vincent Lombardai had just pulled the ferry Thomas Jefferson away from the West 39th Street terminal. When he arrived at the plane, deckhands Hector Rabanes and Wilfredo Rivera deployed the Jason's Cradle over the bow and began pulling 56 people on board.
Captain Manny Liba and his crew on the Moira Smith rescued 14 people. Captain Brittany Catanzaro on the Gov. Thomas Kean and her crew saved 24 people.
When New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg asked NY Waterway Director of Ferry Operations Alan Warren what his crews were thinking when they saw the plane in the water, Warren said, "We don't think. We just react."
The ferries took the shaken passengers to the company terminals at West 39th Street and Port Imperial in Weehawken. In both locations, office staff had triage centers set up, and donated their own clothing to warm the wet and very cold arriving passengers. On the Jersey side, one staffer remembered a stash of company bus driver uniforms, which were extracted from storage and given away.
"The rescue went incredibly well," says Matticola. "So many things went right." He wants to keep a cache of supplies and clothing at the terminals on each side of the river. In the meantime, he's busy coordinating more drills with the FDNY, the NYPD and the N.Y.C. Office of Emergency Management.
Lucante, a longtime advocate of drills, says everyone on the ferries now embraces the importance of drills, which includes making sure equipment is in tip-top shape. "If a nut or bolt is loose, I hear about it. It was not at that level before the rescue. I'm so proud of them." LuCante, by the way, guided by Captain Michael Starr, who jumped aboard from the work dock, steered the Yogi Berra parallel with the inflatable life raft holding the infant who was rescued with his mother, and 22 others.
What could the N.Y. Waterways crews have done better?
"Everybody got off the plane, how could we do it any better than that?" LuCante says. "Everybody used the equipment the right way, how could they do any better than that? I think we were 100 percent.
All because of the drills? "Absolutely."
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey has set ambitious goals to conserve and enhance the region's natural resources for future generations. In 2009, the agency will invest $3.3 billion in capital projects, advancing cleaner goods movement throughout the region, and undertaking a comprehensive sustainability program that focuses on the reduction of particulate matter (PM), nitrogen oxide (NOx), sulfur dioxide (SO2) and carbon dioxide (CO2).
When the ExpressRail on-dock rail network is completed in 2011, it will be able to handle 1.5 million containers per year, displacing the need for close to 2.5 million truck trips on state and local roadways.
In fact, the agency is striving to become the region's first carbon neutral public agency. That means it will reduce its carbon dioxide emissions and offset the remainder. To achieve the carbon-neutral goal, the Port Authority will purchase carbon offsets in 2009 and 2010. The carbon offsets must meet rigorous quality standards and at least 75 percent of the offsets must be generated in the region. The agency also will give tenants and customers the ability to purchase carbon offsets through a new Web site, and will conduct education and outreach programs.
The carbon neutrality program is just one of several steps taken by the Port Authority to reduce environmental impacts, including:
The agency has also undertaken a number of leading projects to reduce port-related emissions. When the ExpressRail on-dock rail network is completed in 2011, it will be able to handle 1.5 million containers per year, displacing the need for close to 2.5 million truck trips on state and local roadways. This will reduce the amount of port-related emissions from truck traffic. The Port Authority also has undertaken the Staten Island Ferry Engine Retrofit and Marine Vessel Engine Replacement Programs that have reduced several hundred tons of NOx emissions per year and exceeded the emissions reductions required to offset NOx emitted as part of the regional Harbor Deepening Program.
With the emergence of new technologies, the Port Authority has the opportunity to implement initiatives that would result in additional diesel emission reductions. Since 2000, the Port Authority has taken the lead to identify the sources of port-related emissions, and quantify, via several air emission inventories, their contribution to the overall emissions in the region. Most recently, the Port Authority has completed baseline year 2006 inventories of GHG emissions from all Port Authority facilities and pollutant emissions from all port-related sources. Additionally, in July 2008 the Chairman announced that the Port Authority would be taking the lead in developing a regional Clean Air Strategy to reduce air emissions at the Port.
At the Board of Commissioners meeting on November 20, 2008, the commissioners reaffirmed their support of the Port Authority's continuing sustainability initiatives by adopting a statement of principles that demonstrates its commitment to reducing Port-related emissions that affect air quality in the region and contribute to climate change.
The Port Authority's commitment to improving air quality at the Port shall be based on the following principles:
At the beginning of 2009, Hanjin Shipping, together with the United Arab Shipping Company, launched a new service sailing between the U.S. East Coast, the Mediterranean, Middle East and India. Designated the IMU service, it comprises 9 vessels: 3 Hanjin and 6 USAC. All of the vessels have a carrying capacity of over 4,000 TEU's. Pictured from left to right is Frank Billman of the Port Authority, Captain of the Hanjin Rio de Janeiro, S. H. Lee, Robert Gaffney, also of the Port Authority, and Hanjin Port Captain Dang Yi.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and New York Shipping Association kicked off its 2009 Port Industry Briefings visiting with Long Island shippers in Melville, NY on February 19, 2009. From left to right are John Emelo, Port Jersey Logistics, Inc.; Bill Cronin, Port Authority of NY & NJ; Beverly Fedorko, New York Shipping Association; Sharon McStine, Port Authority of NY & NJ; Mike Morrow, Port Elizabeth Terminal & Warehouse; and Steve Liberti, Harbor Freight Transport Corp.
Kuehne + Nagel recently shipped the first fuselage for Bombardier Aerospace's newest and largest aircraft model, the CRJ1000. The fuselage originated from Bombardier Belfast, Northern Ireland and was destined for Bombardier's assembly plant at Mirabel, Canada (approx. one hour north of Montreal). Speed, safety, efficiency and cost-effectiveness made ACL the carrier of choice and Newark the best point of entry in North America.
The journey continued by road from Newark to Mirabel.
The Bombardier CRJ1000 Regional Jetliner will be built in two versions, a standard and an extended-range (ER) version. Carrying 100 passengers, the CRJ1000 has a range of 2760 kms and the CRJ1000ER has a range of 3130 kms.
The CRJ1000 regional airliner is being marketed to meet the needs of growing regional airlines for jets up to 100 seats, with environmentally green performance and particular focus on low-operating costs and improvements in passenger cabin comfort.
Shown on the photo taken on arrival at Mirabel, from left to right: Michael Davis and Robert O' Brien of Bombardier Canada, Brian Moore of Bombardier Belfast, Andrew McCullouch of Kuehne + Nagel Belfast and Christian Siviere of Kuehne + Nagel Montreal.