Houston and several other Texas and Louisiana ports hope to restart operations by Monday as logistics providers begin a difficult recovery from Hurricane Harvey and its devastating floods.
The ports of Houston, Freeport, Corpus Christi, and Galveston, Texas, remained closed to deep-draft ships Wednesday until channels can be surveyed for obstructions and shoaling.
The ports of Beaumont, Port Arthur, Sabine Pass, and Lake Charles, Louisiana are also closed.
The US Coast Guard allowed tugs and barges with up to a 20-foot draft to operate in the Port of Corpus Christi’s inner harbor. The port’s main channel remains closed to ship traffic, but port officials said they were restoring electricity to terminals and hope to reopen Monday.
MIQ Logistics Houston will remain closed through Friday September 1st and while we are aiming to reopen the office on Tuesday September 5th, we will only do so once emergency officials have advised that it is safe to move about.
MIQ does not anticipate that the Houston office will be fully staffed during the first week of September, as the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey has impacted our Houston colleagues.
No major damage has been reported at Houston port to terminals, warehouses, and distribution centers, but their reopening has been hampered by the extensive flooding.
Container lines that initially avoided diverting Houston-bound ships have begun rerouting vessels to other ports in order to minimize disruption to schedules.
The 2M service of Maersk Line and Mediterranean Shipping Co. has changed schedules for some of its Houston-bound ships, and diverted two of them to Freeport, Bahamas. The Maersk Ohio, which had been due to dock at Houston from Europe, instead will call Freeport, where its US imports will be picked up by Maersk Denver, which had been scheduled to call Houston this week, but now is scheduled to do so Saturday.
The MSC Sao Paulo, which operates on the 2M service to the US Gulf via the Panama Canal, was scheduled to call Mobile on Thursday and then proceed to Houston, reversing its regular Gulf port rotation.
Cosco said customers should expect delays on the Cosco Auckland, the next ship due at Houston on the carrier’s GME service via the Panama Canal from Asia. Cosco noted that rail service remains interrupted, and warned that customers should expect “a shortage of truck drivers over the next few weeks.”
Union Pacific, BNSF, and Kansas City Southern railroads have suspended service to the area and announced embargoes on all rail traffic in and out of Houston and its surrounding region after track flooding and washouts.