The volume of containers handled by the Port of Virginia soared 24 percent to 188,658 20-foot container units in August from 151,975 TEUs in the same month a year earlier, in part because the port’s 50-foot channel is drawing more post-Panamax vessels.
“The market, I believe, is beginning to respond to all that we have prepared for,” said Michael Quillen, chairman of the Virginia Port Authority Board of Commissioners. “We have big ships calling that need our 50-foot draft, an increasing demand on rail, and we’re expanding our market.”
For the year-to-date, the port has handled 1,363,769 TEUs, an increase of 8 percent from 1,262,957 TEUs handled during the same period last year.
Rail containers handled in August totaled 34,528, a 22.8 percent increase year-over-year. The year-to-date total for rail containers is 247,217, up 15 percent from 215,013 for the same period last year.
The number of containers moved between the Port of Richmond and Hampton Roads harbor on the 64 Express barge service in August was 780, an increase of 200 percent year-over-year. The year-to-date total for the barge is up 105 percent to 5,978 containers from 2,915 containers handled during the same period in 2011.
In August, there were 172 ship calls, compared with 151 in August 2011, an increase of 13.9 percent. The year-to-date ship calls total is 1,310 vs. 1,202 for the same period last year, an increase of 9 percent.
The number of containers handled by the Virginia Inland Port at Fort Royal in August jumped 34.8 percent to 3,465 from 2,570 a year earlier. For the year-to-date, VIP is running about 4.8 percent ahead of last year.
The port’s breakbulk volume totaled 25,413 tons, an increase of 15.3 percent from August 2011. Year-to-date, breakbulk cargo increased 6.6 percent to 237,570 tons from 222,961 tons last year.