Port of Bainbridge has strong May

Published 6:59 pm Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The Georgia Ports Authority’s Bainbridge facility is marking a banner year, with significant increases in cargo for the month just ended, as well as the fiscal year to date, acccording to a press release from the Authority.

For the month of May, the inland barge terminal handled 11,488 tons of freight, a 30.7 percent increase over the May 2011 figure of 8,787 tons, for a difference of 2,701 tons.

“Our Bainbridge facility provides a cost-effective link to port services for Southwest Georgia customers,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “With its river barge and CSX rail connections, Bainbridge extends the reach of important commodities producers, both to domestic and overseas markets.”

On the fiscal year through May, Bainbridge has moved 81,626 tons of cargo, a 19.7 percent increase over the 68,218 tons moved over the same time period in fiscal year 2011, for a difference of 13,408 tons.

Outgoing GPA Board Chairman Alec Poitevint, rounding out his second term as chairman, said he is pleased to see the success at Bainbridge, especially considering the toll the national recession took on its business.

“Bainbridge has seen steady growth in volume since the start of fiscal year 2011, when cargo dropped to about 1,800 tons in July 2010,” said Poitevint, a Bainbridge native. “By July 2011, we more than doubled that performance, reaching 4,500 tons. And in the month just ended, we well exceeded pre-recession levels set in May 2008, when Bainbridge marked 6,277 tons.”

Poitevint is chairman and president of Southeastern Minerals, Inc. and its affiliated companies headquartered in Bainbridge. He is a former vice-chairman and director of First Port City Bank of Bainbridge. He is chairman of American Feed Industry Insurance Company and past chairman of the American Feed Industry Association and National Feed Ingredients Association. He serves as a director of the Georgia Agribusiness Council and was Federal Commissioner of the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint (ACF) Water Compact.

The 107-acre Port Bainbridge, owned and operated by the GPA, is equipped to handle a variety of bulk cargoes via barge traffic along the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint Waterway, providing port users with an economic alternative to other transport. Key industries in the region include agricultural products, fertilizers, textiles/carpeting and metal fabrication organizations.

Long- and short-term storage is available to customers via 93,000 square feet of covered storage, including a recently completed 8,000-square foot extension to one open storage shed. The Bainbridge Terminal serves as a multi-modal distribution facility. It handles domestic and international bulk cargo, including oats, gypsum, wheat, corn, cotton seed, gypsum and fertilizer from Georgia, Canada, New Mexico, New Orleans and the Mid-West region. CSX Transportation provides rail service for the distribution of a vast array of cargo to destinations throughout Georgia, Florida, Louisiana and Alabama.

Berthing space at the terminal includes 421 feet for liquid bulk and 529 feet for dry bulk. On-site equipment includes a 65-ton truck crane with a four-yard clamshell bucket, a Samsung front end loader with a 4.5 yard capacity and two new Caterpillar front-end loaders with three-yard capacity, two forklifts with 9,000-pound lift capacity, portable conveyors, dry bulk rail unloader, dump trucks, hoppers, and other materials-handling equipment.

Georgia’s deepwater ports and inland barge terminals support more than 352,000 jobs throughout the state annually and contribute $18.5 billion in income, $66.9 billion in revenue and $2.5 billion in state and local taxes to Georgia’s economy. The Port of Savannah was the second busiest U.S. container port for the export of American goods by tonnage in FY2011. It also handled 8.7 percent of the U.S. containerized cargo volume and 12.5 percent of all U.S. containerized exports in FY2011.

For more information, contact GPA’s Senior Director of External Affairs Robert Morris at (912) 964-3855 or rmorris@gaports.com. Visit the web site at www.gaports.com.