Port of Hueneme Looks to Restore Storm-Damaged Shoreside Power System

Flooded and damaged shoreside power infrastructure. Photo via Port of Hueneme.

The Port of Hueneme is seeking ways to rebuild its shoreside power system for cargo ships after a torrential downpour in December caused severe flooding and damage to the system.

The port said Jan. 22 that it is “fully committed to aggressively pursuing all available avenues and assistance to restore” the system, adding that it is collaborating with the Ventura County Office of Emergency Services, California Office of Emergency Services and others to garner funding for the restoration work, which could cost an estimated $30 million to $40 million.

“This unforeseen challenge poses a significant impact on our community and operations,” Oxnard Harbor District Board President Celina Zacarias said. “The collaboration between the port, local authorities and community members is crucial as we work toward recovery and strengthening our resilience.”

During severe rainfall on Dec. 21-22, crew members worked to pump water away from the system, but the “overwhelming force of water and converging stormwater flows from the local community and Naval Base Ventura exacerbated the situation” led to major flooding, forcing them to shut down the shoreside system for safety reasons, according to the port.

“The shoreside power technology first implemented by the Port of Hueneme in 2014 was a remarkable leap toward sustainability in the maritime industry,” Vahik Haddadian, CEO of H3 Engineering and the port’s technical expert, said. “The setback underscores the need for resilient infrastructure in the face of extreme weather events.”

By Karen Robes Meeks