Great Lakes NEWS & RUMOR Archive

* Report News


Alpena unloading

03/31:
As of 3:15 p.m. the Alpena was tied up alongside the E.M. Ford at the Lafarge dock in Carrollton MI. The unloading process was underway with the hoses going from the Alpena across the Ford and to the silos. Other activity at the dock included three fuel trucks loading the bunkers of the Alpena.

Reported by: Greg Brass




More sailing dates

03/31:
HERBERT C. JACKSON - March 30 departed River Rouge for Toledo
PRESQUE ISLE - March 29 departed Sturgeon Bay for Two Harbors

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




S/S Alpena opens Saginaw River

03/31:
9:50 A.M. EST the Steamer Alpena is upbound to Carrolton to the LaFarge facility which makes her the first vessel into the Saginaw River system.

Reported by: Dan Maus




Cleanup following the LTV train derailment

03/31:
The effects of LTV Steel Mining Co.'s train wreck, which in January spilled 7,500 tons of taconite pellets, demolished 93 railroad cars, four locomotives and injured two trainmen, are still being felt.

While the gigantic derailment near Schroeder didn't slow production at LTV Steel Mining Co.'s taconite plant in Hoyt Lakes, it's still having an impact on the way LTV is doing business.

All 93 railroad cars have been sold as scrap and have been transported from the derailment site to a scrap yard. The four locomotives pulling the train toward Taconite Harbor when the derailment occurred have also been determined to be scrap. The locomotives have been dragged down an embankment near the derailment site and will soon also be sold to a scrap yard.

The pellets spilled in the accident are still at the site. The pellets will be rescreened at Taconite Harbor and loaded into an ore boat sometime this shipping season. Railroad ties and rail that were torn loose as the train raced out-of-control toward Lake Superior have been replaced and LTV last week resumed transporting pellets along the 74-mile long rail line.

The derailment left LTV with 296 rail cars. LTV will continue to transport its taconite pellets by rail to Taconite Harbor, but because of the shortage of rail cars and locomotives, LTV has contracted with the Duluth Missabe & Iron Range Railway for the use of one locomotive. Additional DM&IR locomotives may be contracted. And LTV has signed a contract with the DM&IR under which the DM&IR will haul LTV's taconite chips to Two Harbors until LTV's rolling railroad stock is replaced.

According to Mattson, four new locomotives are on order and should begin arriving in July. Ninety-three replacement rail cars have also been ordered and should be delivered about the same time.

LTV Steel Mining Co. is forecast to produce 7.5 million tons of taconite pellets in 1997.

Edited from a story appearing in the Sunday, March 30, 1997 Duluth News-Tribune

Visit the TribUniverse for complete details




Busy afternoon in Duluth

03/30:
It's been a good Saturday afternoon for boat traffic here in Duluth. The COLUMBIA STAR, RESERVE, and LEE A. TREGURTHA came in all within about an hour and a half. Even with an east wind today, no one looked like they had much trouble. The ice is opening up quickly inside the harbor, and there are a few open spots not far from shore in addition to the easily visible track that everyone's been using.

Reported by: Jody Aho




News from Prescott

03/30:
CCGS Simcoe departed Prescott at approx. 0900 for Kingston. VBR Prescott contacted the Wolfe Islander III to arrange contact with CCGS Simcoe so that ice conditions and possible docks could be arranged. Ice Boom "A" in the Prescott-Cardinal area is now open to a width of 125m.

Reported by: Ron Walsh




James R. Barker first at Marquette

03/29:
The James R. Barker opened the Port of Marquette, Mich., on 27 March. The first vessel to arrive at Marquette last season was on 31 March, 1996. The James R. Barker carried about 40,000 tons of coal for a Wisconsin Electric Power Co. generating facility, and as of 28 March was sailing to Taconite Harbor, Minn.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





Iglehart lay-up

03/29:
J.A.W. Iglehart arrived in Milwaukee today for a temporary 7 day lay up.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde




Sailing dates

03/29:
The "Roman" left ESSROC in Toronto harbour approx. March 16/97 & is presumably running the cement trade on lake Ontario. FYI.

Cartierdoc is now at pier 51, (I think shed 53) Toronto harbour. RUMOR now is that GLBC have lost vital contract & up to 6 "bulkers" will be inactive until at least Sept., (2-3 each for Algoma & ULS). Of course that could all change quickly; in January the "rumor" was that demand outstripped supply.

Reported by: Jim Fitzgerald




Cuyahoga out for the 1997 season

03/28:
The Cuyahoga sailed from Port Stanley on March 26, 1997 for Nanticoke where she loaded slag aggregate at Ontario Hydro's West Dock. The Canadian Olympic moved over to the East Dock so the Cuyahoga could back in. She departed at around 0900 hours yesterday March 27, 1997 bound for Windsor.

At 1600 hours today March 28, 1997 the USCG Bristol Bay passed up thru Long Point bound for Toledo with an ETA for the Shoal at midnite tonite.

Reported by: Dave Otterman




Superior Midwest Energy Terminal

03/28:
Three 1,000-footers are starting the new season on a regular rotation from Superior Midwest Energy Terminal. Walter J. McCarthy Jr. took the dock's first load and is due back March 31; Paul R. Tregurtha is due in March 28 and again April 2; and Columbia Star is due March 29 and again April 4

Reported by: Al Miller




Ryerson ready to sail

03/28:
The S.S. Edward L. Ryerson has a sail date of April 5th 1997. The Engine room and Galley crew are already on board. The deck personnel are to report April 2nd in Sturgeon Bay. Her route will be from Marquette MI. to #2 dock Indiana Harbor-Inland Steel. She is expected to have a full season.

Reported by: Johnny Duchario




Old vessel seeks final moorings

03/26:
Stretching 400 feet and tipping the scales at 4,368 tons, the J.B. ford is much too big to hang from the ceiling of the Museum of Science and Industry. Nevertheless, the J.B. Ford's owner is open to offers from cities or museums that might want to buy the 94 year old vessel ... the second oldest cargo ship on the lakes.

"It's getting a little long in the tooth," admitted Gary Ostrander, director of operations for the Lafarge Corp ... which owns the boat. "But if someone has an interest in her we'd like to hear from them, he added.

"French owned Lafarge needs more storage space than the 7,000 tons available in the J. B, Ford's hold and is considering building a new facility on shore nearby.

If that happens the boat could be declared surplus. That means it could be towed to another port as storage, sold for scrap or transferred to a museum for display.

One thing is for sure. The J.B. Ford isn't going anywhere under its own power. "It doesn't have a certificare to sail from the Coast Guard," Ostrander said. The work required would cost millions of dollars."

Reported by: Roger LeLievre

Edited from an article appearing in the Sunday March 23 Chicago Tribune




Algomarine arrives Buffalo

03/28:
The Algomarine is now working with a breaker to enter Buffalo Harbor via the South Entrance Channel . They are currently at the Traffic Buoy (3/27) and chopping through the wind rows. She is drawing 26 and a half feet. They should be in by tonight and will head out tomarrow.

Reported by: Brian Wroblewski




Radio reports

03/28:
WLC Rogers City Radio is still having boat calls for the USSGLF. I listened to my first one today. They are daily at about 1510 est, on weekdays. They are on 4369 kHz USB. WLC also gives voice weather reports, ships and buoy reports and traffic for many ships on the upper lakes. Ships can be heard giving weather observation reports and these are interesting to decode.

Reported by: Ron Walsh ,VE3IDW




Duluth's first arrival

03/27:
Duluth's first arrival of the 1996/97 season was Interlake's Charles M. Beeghly. She came under the aerial lift bridge at 3:40 PM. Holding with the first boat into port tradition, the captain was presented with a plaque with a picture of his ship on it. This took place upon the boat's arrival at the Mesabi dock.

Reported by: the Duluth Shipping News




Strike by Canadian engineers called off

03/27:
A threatened strike by engineers of three Canadian lines has been called off after a new contract was ratified. Some 250 members of the Canadian Marine Officers Union, employed by Algoma Central Corp.'s Algoma Central Marine, N.M. Paterson & Sons Ltd. and Parrish & Heimbecker Ltd.'s P. & H. Shipping Division, planned to strike when the St. Lawrence Seaway opened 2 April unless a new contract was reached. The new contract is for five years.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





More sailing dates

03/27:
INDIANA HARBOR - March 27 departed Duluth/Superior for Ecorse
BUFFALO - March 27 departed Cleveland for Lorain and shuttle
COLUMBIA STAR - March 27 departed Toledo for Superior
ARMCO - March 27 departed Toledo for Duluth/Superior
BURNS HARBOR - March 26 departed Milwaukee for Lake Superior
RESERVE - March 26 departed Toledo for Duluth/Superior

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Canadian Prospector Sets Sail March 30th

03/27:
The Canadian Prospector is reported to leave her Morterm Limited dock in Windsor on March 30th. The Algosound (also at Morterm) will apparently not leave until September due to a lost contract.

Reported by: James Neumiller




Report from the Lee A. Tregurtha

03/27:
The Lee Tregurtha was the first boat to lock thru at Sault St Marie this season, they took a load of Iron Ore to Indiana Harbor. Reports of the ice field is solid from Duluth to Isle Royal, and then again from about 40 miles out of Whitefish point into the locks. Ice in upper Lake Michigan extends from the straits to Lansing Shoal.The Tregurtha was unloading last night, and heading right back to Duluth for another load.

Reported by: Bob Gilreath




St. Clair River lighted buoys in early

03/27:
American and Canadian Coast Guards spent all day Tuesday replacing winter cans and nuns with their lighted counterparts in Lake Huron cut and the upper St. Clair River. This is the earliest in recent years - of course due to the lack of ice.

Reported by: Jim Luke




Oglebay Norton Sailing Dates

03/27:
Sailing dates for Oglebay Norton Vessels:
ARMCO
RESERVE -March 27th
COLUMBIA STAR
OGLEBAY NORTON -March 29th.

Reported by: Chris Franckowiak




Soo Locks open for the 1997 season

03/26:
According to the Duluth News-Tribune, the first downbound vessels at the Soo were Lee A. Tregurtha, Edgar B. Speer, Philip R. Clarke and Roger Blough. Upbound vessels were John G. Munson and Adam E. Cornelius.

Reported by: Al Miller




Paul R. Tregurtha visits Port Washington - update

03/26:
The PAUL R. TREGURTHA finally docked about 11 am yesterday. She spent most of the day unloading.

Reported by: the Wiening Great Lakes Page




Twin Ports Tuesday update

03/25:
St. Clair left Fraser Shipyards on March 25 and motored down the front channel to become the first vessel of the season to load at the BNSF ore dock.

Superior Midwest Energy Terminal began loading its first cargo of the season March 25 into Walter J. McCarthy, which had spent the winter at the dock.

Reported by: Al Miller




More sailing dates

03/25:
STUART J. CORT - March 25 departed Milwaukee for Lake Superior
FRED R. WHITE JR. - March 25 departed Toledo for Lorain and L/C shuttle
CASON J. CALLAWAY - March 25 departed Duluth for Two Harbors

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Paul R. Tregurtha visits Port Washington

03/25:
The PAUL R. TREGURTHA made it all the way to Port Washington OK. She arrived off of Port Washington shortly after noon yesterday (Mon.) and went on the hook.

She's been waiting out a good "sou'easter" which brought us high winds, some lake effect snow and rain. She was still on the hook this morning waiting weather.

Since she's 105 feet wide and the breakwater gap is only 300, with virtually no other protection, its probably a wise choice to wait.

Reported by: the Wiening Great Lakes Page




Tanker Jos.F.Bigane Opens '97 Season

03/25:
The Bigane Vessel Fueling Company of Chicago opened the 1997 on March 10th. They passed the Coast Guard inspection on March 15th. Their first fueling followed on Saturday 3/16 with the ITB JOESPH THOMPSON. Since then they have fueled the WILFRED SYKES, MEDUSA CHALLENGER, ITB JACKLYN M/INTEGRITY,CHARLES M. BEEGHLEY. Last year the M/V JOS.F.BIGANE transfered more than 17 million gallons of fuel oils.(#2diesel & #6 oil).

Reported by:Kevin Kelley




Industry Leader Passes Away

03/24:
Renold D. Thompson, retired President and CEO of Oglebay Norton Company, passed away on March 20 after a lengthy battle with cancer. During his 40-year career with Oglebay Norton, Mr. Thompson headed each of its shipping, mining and manufacturing divisions.

Mr. Thompson was involved in a number of organizations and was for many years a member of Lake Carriers' Association's Advisory Committee.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Great Lakes Historical Society; 480 Main St.; Vermilion, OH, 44089.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Monday sailing dates update

03/24:
MESABI MINER - March 24 began loading at DM&IR
KAYE E. BARKER - March 24 began loading at DM&IR
EDWIN H. GOTT - March 24 departed Sturgeon Bay for Two Harbors
JOHN G. MUNSON - March 24 departed Sturgeon Bay


Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




JB Ford for sale?

03/24:
A report in Saturday's (3/22) Chicago Tribune has the 93-year old JB Ford possibly for sale. In a feature article on the ship, Lafarge Cement personnel are quoted as saying the vessel's ~4000 ton cement capacity is inadequate for their needs and they are considering acquiring a larger vessel or building a new shore-based facility in Chicago. If so, the Ford could be declared surplus and put up for sale or scrap. Also discussed in the Tribune report was the possibility of the Ford going for sale as a museum ship; no further details were provided.

Reported by: Vern Sondak




Twin Ports Monday update

03/24:
Monday morning update:
Mesabi Miner plans to depart Duluth late on March 24 after loading at DMIR ore dock. Across the bay, Walter J. McCarthy is fitting out and now plans to depart Midwest Energy Terminal with a cargo of coal early March 26. Plans apparently still call for Coast Guard Cutter Mackinaw to escort a group of vessels from the Head of the Lakes to the Soo.

The only layup vessels that show no signs of activity right now are Calcite II, which generally fits out later than most vessels, and Elton Hoyt II.

Vessel masters report that ice in the Twin Ports is pretty loose. The situation on Lake Superior could change, however, as northeast winds from 15 to 25 knots are forecast for tomorrow.

St. Clair is undergoing Coast Guard inspection March 24 and tentatively plans to depart Fraser Shipyards tomorrow and proceed to BN, possibly becoming the first vessel to load there. The Mackinaw was in Superior on Saturday to break out the harbor and cut a 200-foot-wide track out the entry.

Sunday updates:
Twin Ports vessel movements continue with little trouble thanks to mild temperatures and calm winds. The only delay reported in the past few days was at the DMIR ore dock in Duluth, where frozen taconite pellets delayed Lee A. Tregurtha. Since the boat was loading at the gravity chutes, it's not clear whether to troublesome pellets were coming in by train or being reclaimed from the storage pile at the dock. Meanwhile, ice in the channels is broken up and a few small areas of open water are visible where there's been some traffic. Snow, possibly heavy, is predicted for Monday, so that may change schedules again.

Reported by: Al Miller




Dennis Hale Sole Survivor presentation

03/24:
See and hear Dennis Hale, the only survivor of the wreck of the S/S Daniel J. Morrell which sank in Lake Huron in November 1966 . Tickets are $8.00 in advance or $10.00, at the door. The Event is sponsored by the Saginaw River Marine Historical Society
Send to: SRMHS 707 Sibley St. Bay City, Mi. 48706 Program is being held April 19, 1997 at Bay City Central High School auditorium 1624 Columbus St. (east Side of Bay City) All Proceeds go to the Building of a Museum by the Society.

Reported by: Dan Maus




William A. Irvin 1997 Season Opener

03/24:
The official open day for the 610' retired bulk carrier William A. Irvin and the former US Army Corps of Engineers tug Lake Superior has now been set for May 3rd. The Irvin just recieved a new coat of pain and she is looking as good as ever.

Reported by: William A. Irvin Home Page




More vessels head out for the 1997 season

03/22:
Vessel movements continue in the Twin Ports. Edgar B. Speer left port Friday for Two Harbors and Roger Blough slipped out later that day or early Saturday. Lee A. Tregurtha was loading under the gravity chutes at the DMIR ore dock at midday Saturday. As of 5 p.m., Philip R. Clarke was preparing to back out of Fraser Shipyards with help from two tugs. Kaye E. Barker has steam up at midday and appeared ready to get under way.

Reported by: Al Miller




Paul R. Tregurtha under way

03/22:
The Paul R. Tregurtha is under way through the Detroit River system. She departed the Sterling fuel dock in Windsor, ON upbound at 3:35 P.M. EST. Should be a good line up waiting for the Soo Locks on Monday

Reported by: N. Schultheiss




Ex Soconav Fleet for sale

03/22:
To correct a previous posting, the fleet is for sale as detailed below. L'Orme No.1, Le Chene No.1 and Le Saule No.1 are all subject of a Judicial Sale order and was posted this week in the major marine press. W.M. Vacy Ash is under arrest in the port of Brest in France. She is also for sale but on private terms.
Please contact the writer for any further information.

Ocean Marine Charter Inc.
PO Box 1360, Shediac. New Brunswick E0A 3G0, Canada.
Tel: 514 532 1260 Fax: 506 532 6300 Telex 409201865

Click here for terms



Reported by: Kieran J. Shanahan




Lorain-Cleveland Shuttle run

03/22:
The David Z. Norton has started its shuttles from earlier this week. Oglebay Norton's next ship out will be the Fred R. White Jr. on March 25th. The White will also start the Lorain-Cleveland shuttles.

Reported by: C Franckowiak




Winter Maintenance at the Seaway Locks

03/22:
Winter maintenance work at the U.S. St. Lawrence Seaway Locks in Massena, NY. included this year a paint job for gates on the Snell Lock. The $350,000 project involved draining the lock in preparation for sand blasting and painting the 300 ton locks. Also included in the winter work was repair and maintenance to a hydraulic gate at the Eisenhower Lock.

Reported by: Johnny Duchario




Cleveland Port Authority Purchases C & P Ore Docks Oglebay Norton To Operate New Facility

03/22:
CLEVELAND--(March 19, 1997)-- The Cleveland Cuyahoga County Port Authority today announced that it has completed the purchase of the C & P Ore Docks from ConRail for $6.15 million

The Port Authority also entered into a 10-year lease agreement with Cleveland-based Oglebay Norton Company to manage the facility, which will operate under a new name -- Cleveland Bulk Terminals. The agreement gives Oglebay Norton the option to renew the lease for an additional 10-year period.

"For Oglebay Norton, our new role as operator of this terminal is a logical extension of our Great Lakes marine business," said Stuart H. Theis, Vice President, Marine Transportation. In addition to operating a fleet of 12 U.S.-Flag lakers, Oglebay Norton is engaged in the mining and marketing of industrial sands and the manufacture and marketing of engineered materials used in the production of steel.

"We're excited about this public/private partnership, and we're looking forward to working with the Port of Cleveland to generate additional business at this excellent facility," Theis said.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Mackinaw heading for Duluth

03/21:
The icebreaker Mackinaw spent March 20 working in the St. Marys River. The ship is expected in Duluth on Saturday, where it will cut a track from the Superior entry and escort vessels to the Soo.

Reported by: Al Miller




Image of the James R. Barker, being escorted through harbor ice by two Great Lakes Towing tugs, as she prepares to pass under the Aerial Lift Bridge at 10:12 a.m. Thursday. The Barker was the first vessel to leave Duluth this season.

Image comes from today's Duluth News-Tribune, visit the page for more details.




Joseph L. Block reports damage to hull

03/21:
Tuesday, March l8. Joseph L. Block departed Escanaba bound for Indiana Harbor, several hours after departure she reported damage to her hull, apparently caused by ice. The Adam E. Cornelius left the harbor to assist the Block, taking about 3.500tons from the Block, after releasing some of the load the Block resumed its trip to Indiana.

Reported by: Jim Grill




Barker update

03/20:
James R. Barker was last seen in mid-afternoon proceeding slowly through the ice off about 6 to 7 miles off Duluth entry.

Reported by: Al Miller
Visit the Vessel Passage page for more information




Paul R. Tregurtha blessed in Ashtabula

03/20:
The first vessel to call on Ashtabula this season was the Paul R. Tregurtha. Keeping with the blessing of the 1st vessel in harbor tradition, the ship was blessed by the Rev. Philip Miller of St. Josephs Church.The Blessing included the ship and its equipment and all who shall use it. Captain Hallin of the Tregurtha was given a key to the city. She is going to load coal and head to Port Washington Mi. Mr. Jim Hill of the Ashtabula Marine Museum said that the blessing ceremonies have been held since the 1930s.

Reported by: CeiBob1
Edited from a story appearing in the Star Beacon of Ashtabula




Lorain/Cleveland Iron Ore Shuttle

03/20:
The unique Lorain/Cleveland iron ore "shuttle" resumed on March 19 when Oglebay Norton's DAVID Z. NORTON loaded in Lorain. During the 1996 navigation season, U.S.-Flag lakers hauled 6.7 million net tons of iron ore from the LTV Lorain Pellet Terminal to the Cleveland steelmaker.

The Lorain/Cleveland shuttle allows LTV to utilize the economies of scale to the degree possible. Its Cleveland Works are located on the Cuyahoga River, a waterway which can only accomodate vessels about 635 feet long and 68 feet wide. Therefore, 1,000-foot-long U.S.-Flag lakers deliver iron ore to Lorain. There the cargos are reloaded onto ships small enough to transit the twisting Cuyahoga River. This unique shuttle system has been in operation since the early 1980s.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




More vessels start the 1997 season

03/20:
J. A. W. IGLEHART - March 20 departed Detroit for Alpena
WILFRED SYKES - March 20 departed Sturgeon Bay for Escanaba

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Spring has arrived

03/20:
The J.A.W. IGLEHART past upbound in Lake St. Clair today (3-20)

Reported by: Andrew Severson




Twin Ports and North Shore vessel traffic

03/20:
Vessel movement in the Twin Ports began about 9 a.m. March 20 when the James R. Barker backed away from its layup berth at the Duluth port terminal and got under way for Taconite Harbor. Barker is maneuvering with assistance of two tugs from Great Lakes Towing.

Meanwhile, Sundew is working ice at the Superior entry, where several vessels are expected to call in the coming week.

More Vessel Traffic

All dates and movements are estimates and may vary according to weather and ice conditions. Ice coverage is extensive off Duluth-Superior, but mild temperatures and possibly rain are predicted for the next day or two.

March 20:
the first departures may come March 20 with departure of Mesabi Miner and James R. Barker for Taconite Harbor in late morning or afternoon. As of 8 a.m., Miner did not appear to have yet ballasted down.

March 22:
Kaye E. Barker shifting from Hallett 5 to DMIR
Edgar B. Speer departing Duluth port terminal and arriving Two Harbors

March 23:
Lee A. Tregurtha shifting from shipyard to DMIR
Roger Blough departing port terminal for Two Harbors
Philip R. Clarke departing shipyard for Two Harbors
Cason J. Callaway departing shipyard for Two Harbors

March 25:
St. Clair shifting from shipyard to BN ore dock
Walter J. McCarthy loads at Midwest Energy Terminal, where it spent the winter.

March 26:
Indiana Harbor departs port terminal for BN ore dock
Edwin H. Gott may arrive Two Harbors depending on ice conditions

March 27:
Stewart J. Cort arrive BN ore dock

March 28:
Burns Harbor arriving BN
Adam E. Cornelius arriving DMIR

Reported by: Al Miller

Visit the Vessel Passage page for more information




Medusa Challenger starts first trip of the season

03/20:
Medusa Cement's 91 year-old cement carrier, the Medusa Challenger departed Chicago at 1600 Wednesday for Charlevoix.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Sketchy Fit-Out Times for Duluth

03/20:
According to the Boatwatcher's Hotline, James R. Barker, Mesabi Miner, Kaye E. Barker, Lee A. Tregurtha, Roger Blough, Cason J. Callaway, and Philip R. Clarke are all expected to leave the Twin Ports late this week or over the weekend. Duluth Shipping News reports that the Indiana Harbor will depart March 26 for Taconite Harbor.

Reported by: Andy Hering




Activity in the Twin Ports

03/19:
Winter work continues aboard vessels laid up in the Twin Ports, but a few vessels are showing signs of life. Mesabi Miner was making its radio checks this morning, and Edgar B. Speer is due to depart March 22. Meanwhile, scaffolding remains around the end of St. Clair's unloading boom and Indiana Harbor is ballasted down by the bow to expose its rudders and wheels.

Reported by: Al Miller




McKee Sons

03/19:
The barge McKee Sons pushed by the tug Olive L. Moore shifted over to the ore dock to load for her first trip of the 1997 season - a lower Lake Michigan steel mill .

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association
Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Longest Ship on the Lakes Maintains Hold on Soo Crown

03/19:
For the second year in a row, Interlake Steamship's M/V PAUL R. TREGURTHA, the longest ship ever built for Lakes service, carried the most cargo thru the Soo Locks in 1996. The 1,013.5-foot-long TREGURTHA carried 3,244,780 net tons of cargo thru the Soo Locks during the 1996 navigation season. In 1995, the TREGURTHA hauled 3,071,374 net tons of cargo thru the Soo Locks.

Christened in 1981, the TREGURTHA came out as the WILLIAM J. DE LANCEY.

The ship primarily trades western coal from Superior, Wisconsin, to St. Clair, Michigan.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association

Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Integrity visits Muskegon

03/19:
The cement barge Integrity made her first visit to Muskegon this weekend (her first trip was March 15 when she departed Chicago for Waukegan) . I haven't seen Integrity dock at LaFarge's terminal yet-she is sitting behind the West Michigan Dock and Market Corp (Mart). She was there Tuesday A.M. and P.M., and was still there at 10:30 P.M. (3/18) There was an article in the March 18th Muskegon Chronicle mentioning the arrivals. The article mentioned that Integrity came from Waukegon IL, and is expected to leave for Alpena Wednesday morning. The article also stated her Muskegon destination as the West Michigan Dock & Market Corp. LaFarges terminal is approximately 1000 foot West of the Mart.

Also an Amoco barge (probably the barge Great Lakes pushed by the tug Michigan) on the way to Traverse City had entered the harbor first, waiting on weather before continuing to Traverse City.

Reported by: George Micka




Cutter Sundew Working ice fields

03/19:
Coast Guard Cutter Sundew made its first foray of the season into the ice field off Duluth. The vessel was about 3 miles off the ship canal late this afternoon, proceeding slowly or stopped in the ice. The ice field is larger than in recent weeks, with some windrows visible from shore.

Reported by: Al Miller




Simco working aids to navigation

03/19:
Reports are that the CCGS Simcoe went past Cape Vincent, west bound, on Wednesday, March 12 at approx. 1100. The purpose was to start on the Lake Ontario aids to navigation.

Reported by: Ron Walsh




May 2 is 1997 Season Opening for Steamship William G. Mather Museum

03/19:
(Cleveland, OH) Friday, May 2, 1997 is opening day for the Steamship William G. Mather Museum's seventh season as northeast Ohio's only floating maritime museum. The historic Mather, a restored 1925 Great Lakes ore carrier, is permanently moored in Downtown Cleveland's North Coast Harbor, just north of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and Great Lakes Science Center.

The 618-foot Steamship William G. Mather is one of only four Great Lakes freighter museum ships in existence, and is a premiere example of the golden era of steamboats which once plied the Lakes by the hundreds. Through onboard exhibits, demonstrations and stationed guides, visitors can experience life on a working freighter. The Mather has been nicknamed "The Ship That Built Cleveland," since she made hundreds of trips up the Cuyahoga River carrying 14,000-ton loads of iron ore to the waiting steel mills during the years, 1925 - 1980.

During May, September and October, the Museum is open Fridays and Saturdays (10 AM - 5 PM) and Sundays (Noon - 5 PM). The Museum is open daily Memorial Day through Labor Day, 10 AM - 5 PM; except Sundays when public hours are 12 PM - 5 PM). Admission is $5.00/adult, $4.00/senior citizen (age 60 and above), and $3.00/student (ages 5 - 18 or with a full-time college I.D.). Children under 5 years are free. A special 2.5-hour "Hard Hat" tour is offered to adult visitors each Saturday at 1 PM for $10 per person by reservation. Due to its historic nature, the Museum has limited accessibility.

Reported by: Bob Martel

Visit the Mather's home page for complete details and a virtual tour!




Adam E. Cornelius begins first trip of 1997 season

03/18:
The ADAM E. CORNELIUS - March 18 departed Sturgeon Bay for Escanaba

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




39 Members of Congress Oppose Icebreaking Fee

03/18:
At latest count (the morning of March 18), 39 members of Congress have sign a letter opposing imposition of user charges for Coast Guard icebreaking on the Great Lakes. The proposed fee, 63 cents per ton of cargo loaded or discharged between December 15 - April 15, would significantly add to the cost of moving raw materials and general cargo on the Great Lakes and disadvantage theregion as it competes with other producers in the U.S. and overseas.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association
Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Milwaukee's first boat of the season

03/18:
The Alpena arrived yesterday 3/17. Her arrival was somewhat complicated by the fact that the still layed-up Burns Harbor's bow was right in front of their dock. The Burns Harbor was winched back about 100' by a shore crew. That way the Alpena could go "nose to nose" with the Burns Harbor and get close enough to their dock to unload. This set up also leaves about 2/3rd's of the Alpena out in open water with nothing to tie up to.

Reported by: Andy LaBorde




More on the Algomarine

03/18:
The ALGOMARINE reentered service on March 17, 1997 upon departing lay-up at Point Edward, Ontario. The vessel proceeded downbound to the Shell Fuel Dock at Corruna, whereupon filling bunkers departed upbound in ballast for Goderich, Ontario. Reports indicate that the Canadian Coast Guard Cutter GRIFFON will escort her into that harbor.

Reported by: Ray Bawal, Jr.




Training School for First-Time Sailors

03/18:
Several members of Lake Carriers' Association have agreed to sponsor a class for first-time sailors at Great Lakes Maritime Academy in Traverse City, Michigan, this summer. The purpose of the class is to teach basic skills which will help first-time sailors acclimate more quickly to the shipboard environment and their job requirements in the deck, engine and galley departments.

The class will be held at GLMA between June 1-7. The sponsoring companies are underwriting a portion of the cost, so the tuition fee is only $300 per student. Tuition includes all classroom instruction, a physical and drug screen and room and board in the Academy's dormatories. (The drug screen is required before an individual can obtain a Merchant Mariner's document from the United States Coast Guard.)

Students will be responsible for the cost of transportation to and from the school. Registration for the class is limited to 50 students.

During the week-long class, students will be instructed on topics such as marlinespike seamanship; the layout and operation of steam and diesel propulsion plants; operation of unloading systems; and galley operation. Students will also receive training and instruction in general shipboard safety, firefighting and abandon ship procedures.

For additional information and an application form, contact Great Lakes Maritime Academy at jurokos@nmc.edu or call Judi Rokos at (616) 922-1202.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association

Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Lakes Grain Trade Down in 1996

03/18:
Shipments of grain from U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes ports fell 17.7 percent to 15.5 million net tons in 1996. Duluth/Superior was the only grain-shipping port to show an increase; grain loadings at the largest U.S. Great Lakes port rose 4.5 percent to 4,438,113 net tons.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




U.S. Coast Guard contract

03/18:
Roen Salvage Co., of Sturgeon Bay, Wis., has received a U.S.$191,333 contract from the U.S. Coast Guard's Ninth District in Cleveland to rebuild light structures.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





Edward L. Ryerson to sail in 1997

03/17:
Inland Steel's bulk carrier, the Edward L. Ryerson is due out on April 4, 1997. She has been in long term lay-up since Jan. 24,1994 at Bay Shipbuilding, her lack of self un-loading gear has kept her to the wall. Crews are to report on board for fit-out early this week.
She'll run Escanaba and Port Inland to Indiana Harbor and then occassionally to Lake Superior for iron ore.

Reported by: Mark Hammond




Algomarine ready to sail

03/17:
The Algomarine completed fit-out yesterday at Sarnia, North Slip. They will be leaving for Goderich today (3/17) to load salt for Milwaukee.

Reported by: Peter Schultz




Elton Hoyt 2nd due out late

03/17:
Interlake's 698' self unloader, the Elton Hoyt the 2nd will not fit out until late April-Early May. Reports are that the company lost whatever contract she was working on.

Reported by: Mark Hammond




Date for Seaway opening

03/17:
Seaway Notice No. 1 -- 1997 Opening of the 1997 Navigation Season

For the purposes of planning transits through the Seaway, the opening of the 1997 navigation season is scheduled to take place on the dates and times indicated below:

Montreal-Lake Ontario
April 2, 1997 - 0800 hours (E.S.T.)
Welland Canal
April 2, 1997 - 0800 hours (E.S.T.)

Vessel transits will be subject to weather and ice conditions. Navigation may be restricted to daylight hours in some areas until lighted navigation aids have been installed.

Mariners are advised that due to the high water levels existing on Lake Ontario, the International Joint Commission on January 17, 1997, authorized the implementation of criteria (K). This criteria allows flows to be increased to levels which may affect navigation during the opening period.

The Seaway entities also announce that, for the 1997 navigation season, the clearance date for the Montreal-Lake Ontario Section has been designated as December 20, 1997, 2400 hours.

The channel in the American Narrows ( Thousand Island Bridge ) area appeared open as of yesterday.

Reported by: Ron Walsh




Name Change

03/17:
The tanker Le Brave has been renamed Imperial St. Lawrence. The 1977 built tanker operated by Imperial Oil LTD, was repainted in Imperial colors while in lay-up at Halifax.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre




More tanker news

03/17:
The remaining three tankers owned by the now bankrupt Socanav, have been taken over by a company called Petro-Nav-Inc., a firm related to Group Desgagnes.

Reported by: Roger LeLievre




Alpena begins 1997 season

03/15:
Inland Lakes Management's cement carrier ALPENA left Cleveland on 3/13. She is currently (12:00 A.M. EST.) at anchor in the St. Clair River waiting on weather.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Four More Legislators Oppose Icebreaking User Charges

03/15:
Four more members of the Great Lakes delegation have signed Congressman Oberstar's letter opposing Coast Guard user charges for icebreaking on the Great Lakes. Members of the House signing on were Lynn Rivers (MI); James Barcia (MI); and Jerry Weller (IL). Senator Paul Wellstone (MN) became the second senator to endorse the effort.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association
Visit the LCA's home page for the complete text of the letter with links

Write your Senator Write your Representative



Cort and Burns Harbor set sailing dates

03/14:
The Bethlehem Steel ships have set the following dates for beginning the season:

STEWART J. CORT 3/25/97
BURNS HARBOR 3/26/97


Reported by: Jim Zeirke




Latest sailing dates

03/13:
JOSEPH L. BLOCK - March 12 departed Sturgeon Bay for Escanaba

PAUL R. TREGURTHA - March 12 departed Cleveland for Lorain

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association




Report from the Cutter Sundew

03/12:
Report from Mr. Joe Walters, by way of Ken Newhams
"We've already accomplished more in two days that we did last year in a week. The thickest ice we've found was about two feet near the DM&IR ore docks in St. Louis Bay. We got down Superior Front Channel today as far as where they had the snowmobile races last week. While we had to back and ram to get there, once we turned around, we were able to run right back, cutting the track double wide at about 5-7 knots.

We'll be out every day this week for sure, and probably most of next week."

Reported by: Ken Newhams

Visit the Duluth Shipping News for images and more



Domestic Maritime Fleet Experiences Explosive Growth

03/12:
Washington, DC - America's domestic fleet, those vessels moving cargo within the United States, has experienced explosive growth in the last three decades, more than doubling from 861 large commercial vessels to 1,894 and tripling in cargo capacity, a new report issued by the Maritime Cabotage Task Force. Lake Carriers' Association is a member of the Task Force.

The report, Full Speed Ahead, breaks new ground by counting all large commercial vessels in the U.S. domestic fleet, sometimes known as the Jones Act fleet. Previous studies have generally counted deepwater vessels only.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association

Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Escanaba Traffic

03/12:
March l2 - Joseph L. Block due 2100 hours
March l4 - Joseph H. Thompson

Reported by: Jim Grill

Starting tomorrow, Mr. Grill will have his own section in the Vessel Passage section



Great Lakes Delegation Voices Opposition To Coast Guard Icebreaking User Charges

03/12:
As of yesterday (March 11), 18 members of the House of Representatives and one Senator have signed a letter to Transportation Secretary Slater opposing the proposed user charges for Coast Guard icebreaking on the Great Lakes. More are expected to sign the letter

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association
Visit the LCA's home page for the complete text of the letter with links




More on the Cutter Sundew

03/11:
Ice conditions in Duluth-Superior are normal this year, in sharp contrast to the past few years. On its first icebreaking trip of the season, the Coast Guard Cutter Sundew (image) encountered ice that generally was 18 to 24 inches thick. The thickest ice was 30 inches. The cutter broke about two miles of channel through the harbor and up the St. Louis River to the DMIR ore docks. This is in sharp contrast to last year, when thick ice limited the cutter's first trip to 200 yards. Presently, the first vessel scheduled to leave port is Edgar B. Speer, docked at the port terminal. The vessel likely will head to Two Harbors March 22 to load and then proceed down the lake to arrive at the Soo in time for the opening of the locks. Although clear water is visible several miles off Duluth, the Sundew's captain reports that much of Lake Superior is covered with ice.

Reported by: Al Miller

Visit the Duluth News-Tribune for complete details



McKeil Marine buys a barge

03/11:
McKeil Marine Ltd. has bought the ocean deck barge RSB-2 from Danish interests for use on the Canadian east coast. The 10,000-dwt barge is 91.4 meters/300 feet long, has a 27-meter/90-foot beam and a draft of 6.1 meters/20 feet. It was built in 1976 and has BV Class. Marcon International Inc. was the broker.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





Cutter Sundew Working in Duluth-Superior

03/11:
Coast Guard Cutter Sundew began breaking ice March 10 in Duluth-Superior harbor. Radio reports were sparse but it sounded like ice was about 2 feet thick and not as bad as usual. Off shore, the ice pack extends out about 7 to 8 miles, which is much less than usual. The ice pack has drifted in and out several times in the past few weeks.

Reported by: Al Miller




Departure dates for Bay Shipbuilding

03/11:
Joseph L Block, 3-11-97

Wilfred Sykes,3-17-97

Adam E Cornelius,3-17-97

Charles E Wilson,4-2-97

Reported by: Dave Wilson




Escanaba Kicks Off Ore Trade

03/10:
Escanaba was the first Great Lakes iron ore loading port to resume operations this year. The dock loaded 23,183 net tons of iron ore into the tug/barge unit JOSEPH H. THOMPSON on March 9. The cargo was delivered to LTV Steel in Indiana Harbor. The Inland Steel fleet will resume loading at Escanaba on March 12 with the arrival of the JOSEPH L. BLOCK.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association
Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Paul R. Tregurtha to leave Cleveland

03/10:
The M/V Paul R Tregurtha is scheduled to leave her winter lay-up in Cleveland, OH, on Wednesday, March 12. She will return to Lorain, OH, to unload her last cargo of *last* season. She was unable to unload earlier this year in Lorain due to ice comditions at the port of Lorain. She will depart Lorain for Ashtabula, OH, for a short "lay-up" while work is performed on her variable pitch propellors.

Reported by: Bob Martel




Cutter Sundew to begin ice breaking operations

03/10:
Coast Guard Cutter Sundew is scheduled to begin spring icebreaking operations in Duluth and Superior at 8 a.m. Monday, March 10. Early indications are that some vessels wintering in the Twin Ports may begin moving March 23, either to load here or to proceed to loading ports up the north shore.

Reported by: Al Miller




Seaway could change hands by the end of April

03/10:
Canadian Federal Transport Minister visited St. Catharines on Friday and said that he hopes a bill giving operational control of the Seaway to a group of shipping companies will pass the house and the senate by the end of April. This would mean that the Seaway would be operated by a not for profit company controlled by the shipping companies.

Reported by: Roger Tottman




Port of Cleveland posts new records

03/10:
Port of Cleveland hit a record in handling inter. cargo 48% increase in tonnage from 1995(figs are from 1996.) The Port handled 1110 ship "calls", 46% more than the previous year. Cleveland accepted 3.5 million more tons of cargo and 200 more vessels than 10 years ago. Maritime employment reported to be up 5% and spending up nearly 8%. My words here on a numer of vessels chart it looks like in 1986 about 810 ships called here. In 1996 a little more than 1100 ships called here.

Reported by: CEIBobn




Ships on the move

03/09:
Cleveland ohio the David Z Norton(Paul Thayer) is ferrying iron ore up the Cuyahoga River to the LTV steel mill and I spotted (3/8) the fuel ship Gemini heading in a westerly direction on Lake Erie.

Reported by: CEIBobn




New Dive planned for the Bradley

03/08:
For immediate release

Great Lakes shipwreck exploration to take one giant step

Plans are under way among Northrop Grumman Corporation; the University of Michigan; marine artist and author Jim Clary, of St. Clair, Michigan, and explorer Frederick Shannon of the Great Lakes DeepQuest Organization, to reach a new milestone in Great Lakes shipwreck exploration.

The revolutionary laser line scan system (SM2000) developed by Northrop Grumman's Oceanic Systems unit and used in the investigative search for TWA Flight 800 that crashed off New York City last July, will be married with Michigan's Remote Operated Vehicle for Education and Research (M-ROVER), a "state of the art" remote operated vehicle (ROV) capable of exploring all depths of the Great Lakes, to revisit and explore the wreck of the Carl D. Bradley. Jeff Chu, SM2000 Project Leader at Northrop Grumman says, "It will be the first time ever that this new technology has come to the Great Lakes."

Expedition '97 will return to Bradley which sank during a violent Lake Michigan storm on November 18, 1958. Two men survived the tragedy, clinging to a raft until rescued by the United States Coast Guard. One crewman, Frank Mays, is still alive and will be part of this latest expedition to the site which lies in 330 feet of water, sixty-two miles from Charlevoix, Michigan. In 1995, Jim Clary and Frederick Shannon organized and led the first manned submersible project, "Expedition '95," to this same wreck which had remained hidden from the public for thirty-seven years. Continuing severe weather and poor visibility at the wreck site prevented team members from exploring the major portions of the 640-foot Bradley, launched in 1927.

Although Frank Mays and his surviving partner witnessed their ship breaking in two before sinking, later statements released by the owners of the Bradley Transportation Lines advised that the vessel remained on the bottom in one piece. The controversy surrounding this shipwreck began with a full length feature story in the December 1, 1958, issue of Life Magazine and continues today. Expedition' 97 will resume visual and electronic documentation of the wreck in order to solve the mystery of "what happened to the Carl D. Bradley." The 4-5 day mission is tentatively planned to begin May 7, 1997.

CBS News Magazine and Associated Press will be aboard to document the entire mission.

For further information please contact:

Jim Clary, Director- 810-329-7744 - http://www.jclary.com
Frederick Shannon, Expedition Leader - 810-687-5139
Jack Martin, Northrop Grumman, 410-765-4441

Reported by: the Jim Clary

Visit the Mr. Clary's home page for more information and his EXCELLENT art work




Melvin H. Baker II due on the Lakes this year

03/07:
CSL has plans for their Melvin H. Baker II (Prairie Harvest '84-'89, Atlantic Huron '89-'94). She is now in Quebec City undergoing repairs before re-entering the Great Lakes. It will be renamed, but as of today a name has not been announced.

Reported by: Jim Bearman




More Congressmen Oppose User Charges For Coast Guard Icebreaking on Great Lakes

03/06:
Three more Congressmen have signed Congressman Oberstar's letter opposing imposition of user charges for U.S. Coast Guard icebreaking on the Great Lakes. They are Bart Stupak (MI); Jack Quinn (NY); and John Dingell (MI).

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association
Visit the LCA's home page for the complete text of the letter with links




Alpena due to fit out

03/06:
The steamer ALPENA is due to fit out in Cleveland and is scheduled to leave on March 15 bound for Alpena.

Reported by: Robert Cioletti




Mackinaw Crew in Training

03/06:
The United States Coast Guard icebreaker MACKINAW was in the St. Clair River on March 4, 1997, undergoing training drills. This training was most likely for preperation for the upcoming ice-breaking season.

Reported by: Ray Bawal, Jr.




More on the J.L. Mauthe conversion

03/05:
According to "Nor'Easter" the newsletter of the Lake Superior Marine Museum Association, early word is that, once converted, J.L. Mauthe will be used for the short-haul stone trade on Lake Erie. Converting the boat is expected to cost about $12 million.

Reported by: Nor'Easter
The Nor'Easter is the newsletter of the Lake Superior Marine Museum Association




Outstanding Performance Award

03/05:
Twin Ports Lodge #12 of the International Shipmasters Association recently awarded its John T. Saunders Award for Outstanding Performance to Captain Jerry Dawson of Thunder Bay. Dawson and crewmen Jim Harding and Jack Olsen of the Canadian tug Glenada were cited for rescuing two men from the disable excursion boat Grampa Woo as it drifted on Lake Superior last fall during a storm. Presentation of the award was made Feb. 28 in Thunder Bay.

Reported by: Nor'Easter
The Nor'Easter is the newsletter of the Lake Superior Marine Museum Association




Escanaba update

03/05:
Starting today local tugs will begin breaking ice around the ore docks, while on Friday, March 7, the US Coast Guard vessel Mobile Bay will open a channel from the head of Green Bay to Escanaba.

Reported by: Jim Grill




Ship yard Observations

03/05:
The CSL self-unloaders MANITOULIN and JEAN PARISIEN in the shipyard in Erie, PA have been repainted in the old CSL straight-decker red color scheme. The JEAN PARISIEN was already fully painted and lettered when I saw her March 1, the MANITOULIN was wearing a fresh coat of red, but the white fo'c'stle area wasn't done yet. The LOUIS R. DESMARAIS, also in the shipyard, had not been painted yet.

Reported by: Richard Jenkins




U.S.-Flag Great Lakes Fleet Back to Work after Short Break

03/04:
The 1997 dry-bulk shipping season on the Great Lakes began on March 3 with the sailing of the DAVID Z. NORTON. The 635-foot-long self-unloader will spend the next few weeks moving iron ore on the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland. The NORTON is one of 12 U.S.-Flag lakers operated by Cleveland-based Oglebay Norton Company.

The 1997 shipping season began just 30 days after the 1996 season concluded.

The iron ore trade out of Escanaba, Michigan, is expected to resume on March 8 or 9 with the loading of the tug/barge unit JOSEPH H. THOMPSON. The cement trade is scheduled to resume on March 15 with the sailing of the J. A. W. IGLEHART from her winter berth in Detroit. The ship will load cement in Alpena, Michigan.

The locks at Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, will open on March 25 and a number of U.S.-Flag lakers will begin loading at Lake Superior ports shortly thereafter. Some ships which wintered in Duluth/Superior will be downbound loaded on March 25.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association

Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Escanaba ready to load

02/28:
the Escanaba Ore Dock is expecting to load the Barge Joseph H.Thompson on March 9, the bubble system around the ore docks has been activited, and fisherman have been warned.

Reported by: Jim Grill




Great Lakes Maritime Industry And Customers Oppose Icebreaking User Charges

02/27:
Lake Carriers' Association, the American Iron and Steel Institute, American Great Lakes Ports and the Great Lakes Maritime Task Force have sent a joint letter to Great Lakes Senators and members of the House opposing the Clinton Administration's proposal to implement a user charge for icebreaking starting in FY1999. The proposed fee would generate $25 million a year. The letter, dated February 25, follows:

Dear Senator/Dear Representative:

We are writing to express our firm opposition to a provision in President Clinton's FY1998 Budget to develop and implement a "fee-for-service" for icebreaking performed by the U.S. Coast Guard on the Great Lakes by FY1999. This ill-conceived proposal must be immediately rejected as both bad for the Great Lakes and national economies and a major reversal of long-standing U.S. government policy.

Without Coast Guard icebreaking, the Great Lakes shipping industry would be so reduced in scope that it would become a "used to be" in the nation's transportation system. The ice season can begin in early December and generally lasts until early or mid-April. (In 1996, the Coast Guard continued "ice ops" on Lake Superior until May 17.) Every facet of Great Lakes shipping is affected by Coast Guard icebreaking - the domestic trades, imports and exports to and from Canada, and overseas cargos via the St. Lawrence Seaway. In recent years, these trades have approached 200 million tons.

In the past three years, U.S.-Flag vessels have carried approximately 46 million tons of cargo during the ice season. Iron ore for the steel industry predominates that total. Had these cargos gone undelivered, Great Lakes basin steel mills would have faced shutdowns and lay-offs when their stockpiles were exhausted. Millions of tons of coal, stone, cement, grain and general cargo also moved to and from Canada and overseas during periods of ice.

Government-funded icebreaking is not "corporate welfare." The American steel industry, the iron ore mining industry in Minnesota and Michigan, and U.S.-Flag Great Lakes carriers collectively pay more than $1 billion a year in corporate taxes to the Federal Treasury. Their employees (140,000 strong) are likewise major contributors to the Federal Treasury. It is blatantly unfair for these industries and citizens to be asked to bear an even greater share of the Federal budget.

Furthermore, the Coast Guard provides a variety of services to commercial navigation, recreational boaters and the fishing industry throughout the United States. However, the Administration's budget singles out domestic icebreaking - a service provided almost entirely on the Great Lakes - for user fees. In fact, there are no other user fee proposals contained in the Coast Guard budget. The proposal is blatantly unfair in that it asks our region and its industries to pay for Coast Guard services, while no effort is made to recover costs for services provided on the East Coast, West Coast, Gulf of Mexico or other regions.

We urge you to communicate your strong opposition to user charges for Coast Guard icebreaking to Secretary of Transportation Slater and Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Kramek by contacting Minnesota Congressman James Oberstar and signing the attachedletter.

Sincerely,

American Great Lakes Ports
American Iron and Steel Institute
Great Lakes Maritime Task Force
Lake Carriers' Association


Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association

Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Salt Trade Tops 8 Million Tons In 1996

02/27:
Shipments of salt from U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes ports totaled 8.1 million tons in 1996, an increase of 20.6 percent compared to 1995. Given the very limited number of salt producers, further analysis is not possible without divulging confidential information.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association
Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Public meeting on pilotage in Cleveland Update

02/26:
St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp. will hold a public meeting in Cleveland at 10:00 A.M. March 11, 1997 at the Sheraton Airport Hotel. The purpose of the meeting is to seek ideas on how to improve U.S. Great Lakes pilotage. In particular, comments will be sought in the areas of efficiency, reliability and safety.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





St. Lawrence Seaway opening

02/25:
Canada and the United States plan to open the St. Lawrence Seaway to vessels on 2 April. However, there may be restrictions. If water levels in Lake Ontario remain high on that date, vessel transits will be restricted to daylight only. Heavy precipitation since October has caused higher than usual levels.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





"Big 3" Trades Up in 1996

02/25:
Shipments of iron ore, coal and stone on the Great Lakes in 1996 totaled 141,168,971 net tons, an increase of more than 3 million tons compared to 1995. These three cargos represent the major commodities moving on the Great Lakes in the domestic and cross-Lakes trades.

Iron ore shipments topped 71 million tons for the first time since the recession of the early- and mid-1980s. Compared to 1995, the ore trade increased roughly one percent.

Thanks in large part to increased demand from utilities in Canada and the United States, coal shipments rose 1.9 million tons to 34.8 million net tons.

The Lakes stone trade increased 1.5 percent to 35.1 million tons.

In assessing the 1996 shipping season, credit must again be given to the icebreaking crews of the Ninth District Coast Guard. The USCG Cutter MACKINAW and other Coast Guard icebreakers played an instrumental role in getting commerce moving in March and April of last year. Without the Coast Guard's assistance, the season-end totals would much lower.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association

Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




Grain elevators to be dismantled

02/24:
The Seaway Port Authority of Duluth has awarded a $1 million contract to a Duluth firm to dismantle two grain elevators on the city's waterfront.

Isle Engineering Inc. will dismantle the former Cargill C and D elevators, which have been idle for many years. Cargill D was built in 1900 and C in 1923. The port authority acquired the structures in 1989.

Both elevators occupy land that is separated from the port authority's terminal by a loading slip. Once the structures are razed, the port authority plans to prepare the site for use as a bulk cargo facility by June 1999.

The waterfront on Duluth's inner harbor was once packed with grain elevators and coal docks. Three elevators remain - General Mills, Cargil and AGP. One vacant dock - dubbed Dakota Pier - was obtained several years ago by the port authority and eventually turned into the Northland Constructors Dock. This site is now an asphalt recycling facility that receives roughly a dozen stone cargoes a year.

Reported by: Al Miller




U.S. Coast Guard orders more buoy tenders

02/24:
The U.S. Coast Guard announced 20 Feb. that Marinette Marine Corp. has been awarded a contract for six Ida Lewis-class Coastal Buoy Tenders at a cost of about U.S.$73 million. Construction will begin this year with delivery in 1999 and 2000. With this order, a total of 10 such vessels have been or will be built. Another four are planned.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





Ryerson in the rumor mill

02/19:
Rumor mill has Inland Steel's Edward L. Ryerson coming out of long term lay-up this spring. They plan to use her as is for a year or two then convert it to a self-unloader next year or the year after.

The Ryerson has been in long term lay-up since January 24,1994 at Bay Shipbuilding in Sturgeon Bay.
This is a RUMOR that has not been confirmed

Reported by:




Tug/barge combo damaged

02/19:
The tanker barge Great Lakes, pushed by the tug Michigan was damaged when the combination "nudged" the EJ&E and Canal Street Bridge In Indiana Harbor. Minor hull fractures on the startboard side ballast tanks were discovered as the unit was approaching Grand Traverse Bay. These cracks caused the barge to take on water which was handled by the on board tanks.The unit will have permanet repairs made in Chicago.

Reported by: Rken




Port of Goderich re-cap

02/18:
The CANADIAN OLYMPIC departed February 1st ending the 1996-1997 shipping season at the Port of Goderich. The first ship to arrive was the JOHN B. AIRD, he loaded salt on March 27, 1996. Since then, 171 ships have loaded salt, 32 grain boats visited the elevators, 4 barges delivered liquid calcium and 2 visits by the passenger ship NANTUCKET CLIPPER. Numerous visits were made by the Canadian Coast Guard ships, SAMUEL RISLEY AND GRIFFON.

The first ship for the 1997 season is expected mid to late March.

Reported by: Philip Nash




New pilot rates update

02/17:
As of 1 March, new pilotage rates will take effect on the U.S. Great Lakes. Rate increases of eight percent to 19 percent will be implemented in the three districts, affecting 38 pilots. The new rates are lower than those proposed by the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corp., and were calculated using a new method of the U.S. Department of Transportation. To calculate pilot rates, Great Lakes masters were assumed to earn an average of U.S.$131,213 annually, comprised on U.S.$116,767 in wages and U.S.$14,446 in benefits. First mates were assumed to receive an average wage of U.S.$92,290. Using these figures, the average weighted increase on District 1 is eight percent, including nine percent on the St. Lawrence River and six percent on Lake Ontario. District 2 will increase an average of 19 percent, with no increase on Lake Erie but 31 percent on the Detroit and St. Clair Rivers. District 3 will see a six percent increase overall, with seven percent on Lake Huron, six percent on Lake Michigan and four percent each on Lake Superior and the St. Marys River. The new rates stemmed from the first full Great Lakes pilotage review since 1987. In addition to the new rates, it will also be mandated that pilotage rates be reviewed at least once a year.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





More on the Halcyon

02/17:
The Muskegon Cronical implied in a story published 2/9/97 stated that the Halcyon had sea water in her after she was raised. They also implied that the core of engineers knew about the many problems and that one marine engineer told them it was a wonder the boat didn't sink before she did. The boat was not built to original specifications and sat some 3 feet lower in the water than original specs called for, makeing it unstable in heavy seas.

Reported by: Bob Wheelock
Visit the Grand Haven Port Report's News section for a picture of the vessel





Tanker Gemini running

02/13:
The tanker GEMINI was spotted upbound in Lake St. Clair yesterday Feb. 12 with the Canadain Coast Guard icebreaker SAMUEL RISELY for an escort.

Reported by: Andrew Severson




Canadian Olympic in lay-up

02/12:
The Canadian Olympic arrived at Nanticoke at 0800 hours on Friday February 7, 1997 under escort of the Samuel Risley. The Olympic is tied up at the west dock at Ontario Hydro Nanticoke Generating Station.

Reported by: Dave Otterman




Ore boat wanted

02/11:
The Marquette Underwater Preserve is looking for an ore boat or other Great Lakes vessel (should be linked to the iron mining industry) to clean and sink within Preserve boundries. The Vessel will become a historic diving attraction, drawing attention for our community. Vessel can be recieved as a non-profit donation, allowing donator to write off value of ship. For more information, please contact Kurt Fosburg @ 906-475-5101 or Rob Schmitt @ Diver Down Scuba, 906-225-1699. Any assistance, including possible leads, would be greatly appreciated.

Reported by: Kurt Fosburg




Record Lay-Up at Bay Ship

02/10:
According to Great Lakes/Seaway Log, Bay Shipbuilding Co. in Sturgeon Bay,Wisconsin has its largest winter lay-up fleet ever. Eighteen vessels are tied up in Sturgeon Bay. So many are there at the PRESQUE ISLE is being tied up in the inactive Peterson Shipbuilders yard. The large number of ships means up to 300 jobs.

Reported by: Jim Zeirke




Socanav formally bankrupt

02/08:
Socanav Inc. has been formally declared bankrupt, after its bankruptcy trustee, KPMG, announced that a buyer had not been found. In addition, Socanav failed to present a restructuring proposal by 31 Jan. The date was the end of a third extension granted to Socanav by the Quebec (Canada) Superior Court. Socanav has debts of C$15 million to C$17 million. Its four remaining vessels will be sold, but how and when it will be accomplished is at the discretion of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. The bank is owed C$10 million, with the rest of the debts owed to 700 creditors, ranging from crews to ports on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway. Unsecured creditors will meet 6 March. The four remaining ships, owned and/or operated by Socanav, are the Le Chene No. 1 (Canadian-registry 5,065-gt, 7,809-dwt, 3,451-nt tanker built in 1961 at Marine Industries Ltd., Sorel, Quebec); the L'Orme No. 1 (Canadian-registry 5,890-gt, 9,178-dwt, 4,109-nt tanker built in 1974 at Marine Industries); the Le Saule No. 1 (Canadian-registry 5,114-gt, 7,175-dwt, 3,382-nt tanker built in 1970 at Marine Industries); and the W.M. Vacy Ash (Canadian-registry 5,725-gt, 8,697-dwt, 4,342-nt tanker built in 1969 at Marine Industries). All are iced in at Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and the estimated value of all four is C$8.5 million. The four were to be sold to Gorse Down Canada, but that deal collapsed in October under questions from regulators. Socanav and Gorse Down Canada shared offices and for six months had the same president.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





Ada Gorthon aground in Seaway

02/07:
The Ada Gorthon (Swedish-registry 13,525-gt, 10,565-dwt ro/ro built in 1984, operated by Gorthon Lines) ran aground in the St. Lawrence Seaway on 5 Feb. near Pointe-au-Pic, Quebec, Canada. Heavy ice was reported in the area. The ship was sailing to Pointe-au-Pic with paper, and suffered damage to a tank. The Ada Gorthon was later escorted to Quebec.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"





CANADIAN OYLMPIC calls it a season

02/06:
The CANADIAN OYLMPIC departed the Atwater dock in Detriot this morning (2-6) bound for Nanticoke Ont. for winter lay-up.

Reported by: Andrew Severson and Dave Marcoux




Repairs to the Aerial Lift bridge

02/05:
Repairs will be started on the Aerial Bridge in Duluth this week. On Wednesday or Thursday, the bridge will be jacked up about a foot in order to relieve the tension on the cables around the pulleys. Makeshift asphalt ramps will be placed to allow traffic to cross without having to hit the one-foot difference in height. This same procedure was done last winter when the northeast pulley was moved back into place (it had started to slide and would likely have become stuck sometime last year had the repair not been made). This winter's work includes more pulley and shaft work. The bridge will be closed to any vessel traffic until sometime early in March.

Reported by: Jody Aho




Float on Lakes Reaches New Post-Recession Peak in 1996

02/05:
U.S.-Flag carriers moved more than 117 million net tons of dry- and liquid-bulk cargo during the recently completed 1996 Great Lakes shipping season, a new record for the post-recession era. The previous peak was 115 million tons in 1994.

Iron ore cargos moved in Jones Act lakers totaled 60.6 million tons in 1996, the highest level since 1988. The Lorain/Cleveland iron ore shuttle reached it highest ever - 6.7 million tons. The Lorain/Cleveland shuttle dates from the early 1980s.

Stone cargos in U.S. bottoms totaled 27 million tons, the most since LCA begain its survey of U.S.-Flag carriage in 1985.

The cement trade in U.S.-Flag vessels also set a new record - 3.8 million tons.

Two commodities registered decreases in 1996. Coal cargos declined slightly from 1995. Grain loadings fell to their lowest level since 1988. High grain prices prompted millers to switch to the spot market in 1996 and thus increase their usage of rail deliveries.

Reported by: the Lake Carriers Association

Visit the LCA's home page for complete details




More on the Mauthe conversion

02/05:
The conversion calls for the entire aft to be cut off, including living quarters and removal of the engines. The tug (unknow at this time) will then fit into a steel notch. Last week crews were removing asbestos from the vessel.

In related news: this years lay-up fleet at Bay Shipbuilding is the largest ever - 18 vessels, the old record was 15 during the 94/95 lay-up

Reported by: Norm Becker

See the lay-up list for more details




Tug Atomic breaking ice in Kingston

02/05:
Feb 3 the tug Atomic departed Hamilton enroute to Kingston to break ice for the Kingston ferries. She had been called in after the ferries started to have trouble working in heavy ice. One ferry had already sustained prop damage. The tug was requested a couple days earlier but had to wait on the Burlington Bridge to leave Hamilton.The Atomic has quite an extensive history of Ice- Breaking from years past but this is her first foray since McKeil's bought and repowered her.

Reported by:




Tug John Spence Still Working

02/05:
The Spence And MacAsphalt 401are still plying there trade between Sarnia and Lake Erie Ports. She will be going on hire to Pembina in a couple days as there is no other vessels available to serve as a dive/work platform in the heavy ice in Lake Erie

Reported by:




Canadian Olympic continues to run

02/03:
The Upper Lakes vessel Canadian Olympic was in Goderich yesterday (Feb. 2) for what appears to be one more shipment of salt for this season. Also in harbor was the C.C.G.S. Samuel Risley, to assist her in the ice. The Canadian Olympic continues to work overtime in the salt trade this late in the season. On her last trip into Goderich for salt (January 23) she was accompanied by the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Mackinaw (WAGB-83)

Reported by: Mike Gibson




ULS changes name

02/02:
Name Change: ULS Corporation Becomes Upper Lakes Group Inc.Ottawa, January 23, 1997 - ULS Corporation has become Upper Lakes Group Inc., effective January 1, 1997, and all correspondence should be addressed accordingly, the company advises.

Reported by: Canadian Shipowners Association




Barge refit in Milwaukee

02/01:
The City of Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District will spend U.S.$55,000 to refit a city barge to clean the Milwaukee River this summer. About U.S.$20,000 will be spent on skimming equipment and outboard engines and the rest will be spent on operating the barge. The city's share must be approved by the Common Council. Eventually, the barge will be replaced by a new, dedicated vessel.

Reported by: Steve Schultz
From the weekly electronic publication "The World Maritime News"






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