Monday, December 11, 2017

Container Shipping and Marine Services Group Subsidiary Supports US Defense Logistics Agency

Warmer Climes than Usual for Fuel Supply Experts
Shipping News Feature
PUERTO RICO – When we follow the fortunes of Crowley Fuels, subsidiary of the Crowley Maritime Corporation, the US container and general cargo shipping marine services group, it mainly concerns the problems of supplying remote, outlying places in the company's native Alaskan territory. As snow envelops Europe however the latest contract undertaken tells a tale from warmer climes.

In early October Crowley commenced a three-month mission in Puerto Rico in support of Foster Fuels, a Brookneal, Virginia based emergency response fuel supply contractor for the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). That first involvement saw the shipping of more than 130 fuel trucks aboard a Crowley liner services vessel from Jacksonville to San Juan, with multiple follow-up deliveries in subsequent sailings providing additional material and resources.

The problems engendered by this summer’s particularly active hurricane season saw a dearth of CDL/HAZMAT-certified fuel truck drivers throughout the areas affected with all such personnel in overwhelming demand so Crowley further supported Foster’s Puerto Rico mission, dispatching six of its own qualified fuel truck drivers from Alaska to the island.

Since Hurricane Maria struck, Crowley has transported 15,066 commercial loads and 6,077 loads for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), providing rebuilding supplies, water, food, generators and heavy equipment to help to aid people affected by the storm. Currently, the company is providing shipments that will transport up to 65,000 power poles to Puerto Rico to help restore the island’s power grid.

To speed the flow of cargo from the mainland, Crowley has expanded its vessel fleet with seven flat-deck barges to raise capacity by 67%, which has allowed the company to have a vessel call in San Juan almost every day since the storm. Meanwhile the logistics team continues its support of the FEMA as well with supply chain management, long-distance and local trucking, deconsolidation, cross-docking and warehousing services on the mainland and on the island. Sean Thomas, vice president, Crowley Fuels, commented:

“The safe and successful delivery of fuel trucks and drivers demonstrates the effectiveness of Crowley’s businesses and people when they are combined for a project with stakes as high as this one. The efforts of the entire Crowley team: drivers, mariners and scores of others in support, have been instrumental in returning critical services and infrastructure in Puerto Rico to operational status. We commend their non-stop efforts, which took place under difficult circumstances.”

The Crowley Fuels employees dispatched to the island include Luann Blodgett, Fred Parish, Tom Martin, Herman Reich, Brandon ‘Billy’ Hills and Tim Michaels (pictured). These six workers, who are represented by the US Steel Workers Union, performed a combined total of 2,200 hours distributing fuel to businesses and residents on the island, and just arrived home in Alaska.