By Karen Robes Meeks
Washington State saw its first marine terminal surpass one million TEUs in a year when SSA Marine’s Terminal 18 reached the milestone earlier this month.
“To reach 1 million TEUs at a Puget Sound terminal for the first time is an enormous achievement and a testament to the value of working together under the banner of The Northwest Seaport Alliance,” said Don Meyer, Port of Tacoma commission president and co-chair of the NWSA.
The North Harbor terminal, which is on its way to 1.1 million TEUs by year’s end, credits the success to an agreement with ILWU Local 19 to launch “continuous vessel operations,” allowing breaks to be staggered so more cargo can be handled daily.
This allowed SSA to handle 5,500 containers on and off a single vessel, achieving an average of 30 crane moves hourly, a first for a terminal in the Puget Sound, according to the Northwest Seaport Alliance.
“Surpassing 1 million TEUs is a milestone and a testament to the hardworking people who come here every day and do a wonderful job,” said Eli Bohm, general manager at Terminal 18. “A saying has surfaced in recent months: ‘Teamwork makes the dream work.’ We definitely have an outstanding team that is without a doubt committed to continued success.”
To enhance efficiency, Terminal 18 also boosted its equipment needs by investing in rubber-tired gantry cranes, a move that helped draw two new services and an ocean carrier this year.
“We are proud to announce that Terminal 18 has handled over 1 million TEUs so far this year,” said Courtney Gregoire, Port of Seattle commission president and co-chair of the Northwest Seaport Alliance. “This reflects a strong partnership between The Northwest Seaport Alliance, SSA Marine and Labor that sustains hundreds of good paying jobs in our harbor.”