SC Ports show signs of strength, recovery in September

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Cargo volumes for the month of September at S C Ports Authority indicates signs of strength and recovery in containers, inland port moves and vehicles with year-on-year activity since the outbreak.

According to the reports, SC Ports handled 195,101 twenty-foot equivalent container units (TEUs) at Wando Welch and North Charleston container terminals setting a record in September by highlighting a slight increase year-over-year.

SC Ports handled 107,816 pier containers, which measures boxes of any size, in September, down 2 per cent year-over-year. This brings the fiscal year total thus far to 323,495 pier containers, says reports.

For the Port of Charleston, vehicles remain a strong business segment with 21,702 vehicles handled at Columbus Street Terminal in September, down less than 2 per cent year-over-year. Fiscal-year-to-date, vehicle volumes are up 25 per cent with 73,044 vehicles handled since July.

SC Ports’ Inland Port Greer and Inland Port Dillon had a busy September as cargo activity increased. Cargo owners needing access to the Port of Charleston benefit from the flexibility and predictability provided by these rail-served inland ports.

Inland Port Greer had 12,994 rail moves in September, up 4 per cent year-over-year. Inland Port Dillon reported 3,108 rail moves in September, up 27 per cent year-over-year. Combined, the inland ports had 16,102 rail moves in September, up 8 per cent from a year ago.

Jim Newsome, CEO and President, SC Ports said in a statement, “September volumes outperformed expectations as we see an uptick in cargo flowing through our marine terminals and inland ports. We will continue to operate well-run terminals, as we have throughout the pandemic. We remain highly focused on capturing more retail goods and e-commerce cargo, such as with Walmart’s new 3-million-square-foot distribution center in Dorchester County, S.C.”

According to the South Carolina Ports Authority, SC Ports also had the record-setting CMA CGM Brazil call on the Port of Charleston in September. The 15,072-TEU vessel showcased SC Ports’ big-ship capabilities, efficient operations and deep harbour.

SC Ports has invested $2 billion into modernizing infrastructure, including upgrades to Wando Welch Terminal and building Phase One of the Hugh K. Leatherman Terminal, which will open in March. The Charleston Harbor Deepening Project is also fully funded and on schedule to achieve a 52-foot depth in 2021.

Newsome added, “The ability to seamlessly handle the CMA CGM Brazil highlights SC Ports’ deep harbor and modern capabilities. We have pursued an amazing amount of infrastructure in a short period of time. In 2021, we will have the deepest harbour on the East Coast, and we will celebrate the opening of Phase One of the Leatherman Terminal.”

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