It's on us. Share your news here.

Summerside Harbour Due for Dredging, First Time in 18 Years

Posted on October 31, 2016

By Colin MacLean, The Guardian

It’s been 18 years since Summerside’s harbour needed the services of a dredger, but it is likely about to change.

A recently completed engineering analysis of the channel, which allows large ships access to the city’s docks, showed the pathway is showing signs of filling in at four locations.

Arnold Croken, president of the Summerside Port Corporation, said the narrowing means a dredger will likely have to be brought in to deal with the sedimentation, though he was uncertain whether it would happen this fall or next spring.

“It used to be a cycle that every six or eight years they had to dredge, so we’ve been doing pretty well for the past 18 years,” said Croken.

The Summerside port was once a busy hub for the export of potatoes but changes in the industry have all but dried up that traffic.

The Summerside Port Corporation has been exploring new ways to use the port in recent years, including attracting small cruise ships and other crops, like soybeans.

Keeping the channel open to allow the traffic is vital if the port is to have a future and contribute to the economy of Summerside, said Croken.

The channel has caused problems for the city before. It is the primary reason why the port corporation has been unable to attract large cruise ships like the ones that visit Charlottetown.

After a lot of work, the port corporation was able to attract a smaller cruise ship from the Silversea Cruises line that had been scheduled to stop in Summerside on Oct. 17. However, the ship cancelled its stop in Summerside and went to Charlottetown instead. Part of the reason the company gave for the move was the ship’s captain, in consultation with the company, didn’t feel his ship could safely dock in Summerside given the draft clearance he had to work with.

Croken said the channel has enough clearance to allow pretty much anything with a draft of six metres or less, with a cushion of more space if needed.

All the data they had indicated the Silversea ship could have safely docked, he added, even with the infilling identified in the engineer’s report. But the captain had to do what he thought was best for his ship.

Croken said the port corporation will work with the company to clear up any uncertainties regarding the draft situation, including going over the dredging plans to improve it.

Source: The Guardian

It's on us. Share your news here.
Submit Your News Today

Join Our
Click to Subscribe