Jan 18 2018 0

U.S. Dredging Companies Invest in Making America First: Ship Construction and Critical Infrastructure Projects

The Dredging Contractors of America welcomes the support and recognition of the American Maritime Partnership for the dredgers’ substantial capital investments made by the U.S-Flag, Jones Act private sector dredging companies:

The American Maritime Partnership (AMP), the voice of the domestic maritime industry, today highlighted the U.S. dredging industry’s commitment to build and maintain safe, efficient and cost-effective navigation channels in the nation’s inland waterways and ports.

The recent deliveries of four state-of-the-art vessels, constructed by nearly 700 American workers in U.S. shipyards, are a reflection of the U.S. dredging industry’s continued investment in building dredges with increased capacity for complex operations while maintaining the highest environmental and safety standards for dredging operations.

These vessels represent more than $310 million in new vessel construction in the United States, and have helped to support the U.S. shipyard industrial base and support our nation’s critical infrastructure.

Recent vessel investments include:

  • Delivery of Weeks Marine Inc.’s hopper dredge MAGDALEN;
  • Delivery of Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Corporation (“Great Lakes”) ATB hopper dredge ELLIS ISLAND and tug DOUGLAS B. MACKIE;
  • Delivery of Manson Construction Company’s ABS cutter suction dredge ROBERT M. WHITE;

Other activities include announcements on the construction of an additional 22 vessels:

  • Weeks Marine built 12 scow sand barges in 2017 in Corn Island Shipyard, Inc., Grandview, Indiana., and C&C Marine & Repair, Inc., in Belle Chase, Louisiana.
  • In July 2017, Weeks Marine announced that its new cutter suction dredge, the JS CHATRY construction is underway in Belle Chase, Louisiana at C&C Marine and Repair Shipyard.
  • In October 2017, Great Lakes announced contracts for Conrad Shipyard of Louisiana to build 9 barges :  4 anchor barges, 2 deck barges, and 3 crane barges.

The MAGDALEN arrived on January 2, 2018 to Southport, North Carolina, and is now working on one of state’s most critical projects: the protection of Highway 12 in the Buxton area on North Carolina’s Outer Banks. Over the course of three and a half years, the construction employed over 250 shipyard employees at Eastern Shipyard in Florida.

“Weeks works hard to identify and understand growing markets in the U.S. and is constantly evaluating new opportunities to meet new demand,” said Eric Ellefsen, Weeks’ Executive Vice President. “We are particularly attentive to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ program, and have been pleased by the strong growth in our second home, Louisiana, as the State fights coastal erosion and the loss of valuable wildlife habitat.”

The construction of the new build ATB hopper dredge ELLIS ISLAND and tug DOUGLAS B. MACKIE took place in Panama City, Florida, and employed more than 400 shipyard workers over the three-year construction period. Now located offshore of Gulfport, Mississippi, ELLIS ISLAND commenced dredging operations in early December 2017 on the MSCIP Comprehensive Barrier Island Restoration Plan which will reconnect Ship Island East and West.

David Simonelli, President, Great Lakes’ Dredging Division commented, “We are excited to take delivery of this advanced vessel which improves the competitiveness of our hopper group and represents a substantial capital reinvestment in the Great Lakes dredging fleet. The ELLIS ISLAND significantly increases the United States commercial Jones Act hopper fleet capacity as the largest hopper dredge in the United States market, with a carrying capacity of 15,000 cubic yards.”

Manson Construction Co. paced into service the 30-inch ABS cutter suction dredge ROBERT M. WHITE. Constructed in Morgan City, Louisiana by Halmar Shipyard, the ROBERT M WHITE was named in honor of a long-term Manson employee who was a leader in maritime industry safety.

Frederick Paup, Chairman of the Board of Manson Construction Co., stated, “We are proud that the ROBERT M. WHITE is a U.S. built, U.S. flagged, and U.S. crewed vessel that will focus on the coastal restoration and maintenance dredging markets of the United States. We will continue to invest in the U.S. dredging market to help our stakeholders accomplish their missions.”

“We have high expectations for our state-of-the-art ROBERT M WHITE cutter suction dredge. We appreciate the quality and timeliness of the dredge’s delivery by our team, such that she will begin digging this summer,” said Manson President Eric Haug.

“These are great capital investments made by the private sector dredging companies.  We put America first.”  said William P. Doyle, CEO & Executive Director of the Dredging Contractors of America, and Director, AMP Board of Directors.

Nationally, the domestic maritime industry accounts for 499,676 jobs, $29.1 billion in labor compensation, $100.3 billion in economic output, $45.9 billion in value added and $11.4 billion in taxes. There are more than 40,000 vessels in America’s domestic fleet, one of the largest in the world.


To view AMP’s statementU.S. Dredging Industry Invests in American Workers, New State-of-the-Art Technology to Deliver Four New Vessels for Critical Infrastructure Projects, see, www.americanmaritimepartnership.com

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