Alaska Marine Lines Launches New Rail Service Dock

An Alaska Marine Lines barge. (Above) Alaska Marine Lines’ new rail facility.
Photos: AML.

Seattle-based barge service company Alaska Marine Lines in July said that it has launched a new rail service dock in Seattle to accommodate seafood shipments from Alaska to Lower 48 state destinations.

The new service, AML stated, is in response to growing demand from customers for Alaska pollock. Much of the pollock was previously routed on vessels that offloaded in Bayside, New Brunswick, Canada, then on a short rail trip within Bayside, followed by trucking to eastern U.S. destinations.

“The new dock provides a reliable and efficient shipping solution for seafood companies in Alaska,” the company said in a statement. “Designed to handle transfers from containers to refrigerated rail cars, it streamlines the transportation process and enables customers to gain access to intermodal service options.”

Fish season is said to be ‘all-hands-on-deck’ within AML and other Lynden Transport subsidiaries — typically lasting from May through October. The 2023 season is now underway.

Alaska Marine Lines’ first Western Alaska barge of the season set sail from Seattle on May 5 carrying dozens of fishing boats destined for Dutch Harbor, Dillingham and Naknek, Alaska. Each year, Lynden Air Cargo flies fresh fish from Naknek or Dillingham, Sand Point and Cold Bay to Anchorage where Lynden Logistics arranges flights for air delivery across the globe.

Once seafood arrives in Seattle or Fife, Wash., Lynden Transport and trucking company LTI Inc. move seafood from destinations along the I-5 corridor.

According to Tyler Maurer, Alaska Marine Lines’ seafood sales manager, Lynden moves on average 10,000 containers of fish each year to Seattle and Dutch Harbor, Alaska. In addition to fresh seafood moving by Lynden Air Cargo and Lynden Transport, Alaska Marine Lines moves frozen and canned fish from Naknek, Dutch Harbor, Kodiak, Cordova, Valdez, Dillingham, Sand Point, Southeast Alaska and False Pass.

The firm has said that it moved about 5.5 million pounds of pollock and cod across the country from January to May and is anticipating moving even more than that from June to October.