More than seven months after a devastating fire, the Charleston Ice Plant in Coos Bay has reopened for business on a limited basis before the facility is fully operational in the coming weeks. The ice plant, which had been vital resource to commercial fishermen along the West Coast, had been closed since December 2019 when a fire ravaged the facility.
In rebuilding the plant, the Port of Coos Bay saw that having available flake ice in the Charleston Marina was crucial to keeping the region’s commercial fishing industry viable. Bolstering ice making and storage capacity at the new facility would help meet fishermen’s needs during the high seasons.
“Service will be limited initially to commercial fishing vessels as crews are awaiting the arrival of additional components for the service delivery system to accommodate smaller vessels,” the port said. “There will be no on dock truck service until the dock structure is fully completed.”
With the new plant, storage capacity will go from 115 to 158 tons, and production from 2 to 5 tons per hour, which will improve service delivery times during the high season, the port said.
Rebuilding the facility was critical to the Port of Coos Bay, Oregon’s third biggest fishing hub. The Charleston Ice Plant is among the few public ice docks in the state to provide enough ice necessary for commercial fishermen to preserve their catch.