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Port of Savannah crane operators work the Ever Max containership at Garden City Terminal on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2023. Photo courtesy Georgia Ports Authority

Port of Savannah crane operators work the Evergreen Ever Max at Garden City Terminal on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2023. Photo courtesy Georgia Ports Authority

Port of Savannah Container, RoRo Volumes Gain in July

Mike Schuler
Total Views: 1182
August 10, 2023

The Port of Savannah saw a big jump in container volumes last month compared to June, but total throughput remained far below last year’s unusually busy July.

The Georgia Ports Authority reported 447,590 TEUs in July, up 17% from the 381,825 TEUs moved in June.

Last month’s volumes Port of Savannah represented an increase of 60,564 TEUs compared to pre-pandemic in July 2019, for a compound annual growth rate of 3.7%. However, it was a 16% decrease compared to July 2022, which was the busiest July on record for the port.

“I would like to thank our customers, and commend our employees, our partners at Gateway Terminals, and the Savannah and Brunswick ILA for achieving one of our busiest July performances ever,” said GPA President and CEO Griff Lynch. “Their efforts were aided by the reopening of Container Berth 1 at Garden City Terminal, which is already making a positive impact on the flow of cargo.”

The dock renovations in Savannah increased annual berth capacity by 25% and extended the port’s ability to serve large vessels carrying over 16,000 TEUs.

“The expanded berth and four of the largest ship-to-shore cranes in North America came online last month, providing faster vessel service and an increase of 1.5 million TEUs in annual berth capacity,” said GPA Chief Operating Officer Ed McCarthy. “The Port of Savannah can now serve five big ships simultaneously, and has eliminated its vessel backlog.”

GPA has ordered eight new ship-to-shore cranes for Garden City Terminal, with the first four arriving in February and the next four due to arrive later this month. All eight will be operational by December.

Improvements to the Port of Savannah will increase container capacity by 3.5 million TEUs per year, reaching a total of 10 million TEUs by 2026.

“We’re excited about our infrastructure projects, which are preparing Georgia Ports for the future,” said GPA Board Chairman Kent Fountain. “In addition to Berth 1, our transload facility will come online in September. We already have customers lined up to use the long-term storage at Garden City Terminal West opening in November, and construction is under way to renovate the berths and container yard at Ocean Terminal.”

Also in July, Georgia Ports handled almost 71,000 units of autos and heavy machinery in Roll-on/Roll-off cargo, which is a 23% increase compared to the same month last year. This made it a “top 5” busiest month for Ro/Ro cargo at Georgia’s ports.

“The strong showing in finished vehicles last fiscal year has continued into the first month of FY2024,” Lynch said. “The primary driver is increased production supported by better microchip availability.”

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