Northeast Florida and Southwest Georgia Ports – By the Numbers
The area ports are putting out an unbelievable amount of cargo.
To the north of Jacksonville, is Savannah, one of the fastest growing ports in the world. In September of 2015, the Port of Savannah achieved its seventh consecutive record month for containerized cargo. In September alone, 317,411 twenty-foot equivalent containers came in and out of its Port. Those come in or out on large ships via train or truck from and to the entire country. Some of the largest commodities transported through Georgia ports were paper, rubber, steel, autos and machinery. The Port of Savannah’s record volumes continue a pattern that has made it the only U.S. port to rank among the Journal of Commerce’s listing of the Top 10 fastest growing ports in the world, released recently. Its Port is expected to grow by 5 percent annually over the next 10 years, which will also result in more truck traffic in Georgia.
Meanwhile, to the south of Jacksonville is Port Canaveral, which recently celebrated the debut of its container operations with Gulftainer’s new terminal. Gulftainer is a United Arab Emirates-based container terminal operations company. Where Jacksonville has better highway access with three major roadways, Canaveral is about an hour closer to Orlando and the growing number of distribution centers there. It is making a push to make an impact on the market, claiming easier access than the ports north and south of it.
Meanwhile, Jacksonville’s Port boasts about moving more than 1 million containers (TEUs) through Jacksonville’s public and private marine terminals annually. It claims the widest shipping channel in the Southeast U.S., wide enough for two ships to pass at the same time. More than 60 million U.S. consumers live within a one-day truck drive of Jacksonville’s port.
In 2014, Port Miami processed 876,708 TEUs and Jacksonville processed 936,973 TEUs, according to the Wall Street Journal. In comparison, South Carolina Ports saw a volume of about 1.8 million TEUs last year. Savannah, according to the Journal of Commerce, saw about 3.3 million TEUs.
Of the top 20 busiest ports in the world, all but a handful are located in the U.S. Florida also has the most ports of any U.S. coastal state, which tends to keep cargo more widely dispersed, adding emphasis on the Interstate and rail systems. Add in Savannah, and you will quickly see just how much traffic our Interstates see everyday merely transporting goods to and from Florida and Georgia ports, particularly within a few hundred miles of Jacksonville and Savannah.
Container Ships Are Getting Huge
Although we have previously pointed out problems in American shipping infrastructure and limitations caused by the Jones Act, the ships coming to port now hold more containers than ever. Each colored dot represents a container which came in by a tractor-trailer or train car. It’s a staggering number if you think about it. With gas prices at a low, more companies are using that age old 18-wheeler means of transportation.
Jacksonville is a major gateway with 3 major interstates in or very near it.
I-10 Connects Jacksonville, Florida to California:
I-95 Connects Miami, Florida to Maine:
I-75 Connects Miami to Michigan:
Trucking Accidents: A Numbers Issue:
With all of these nearby ports growing, those entering trucking getting older and the inability of professional trucking companies to recruit younger drivers into the profession means more pushing the envelope, more wrecks and more people injured or killed.
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John is a Board Certified Civil Trial lawyer by the Florida Bar and is licensed to practice law in Florida, Georgia and Alabama. He also is licensed before the U.S. Supreme Court and in many federal courts across the southeast. He has taken CDL coursework, as well as attended trucking specific coursework. His firm handles tractor-trailer involved wrecks (we prefer not to use the term ‘accidents’ as history shows there is more involved these cases than mere ‘accident’ or ‘happenstance’). We hire experts from day one to maximize client recovery.
Our toll-free number is 1-877-7-INJURY or 1-904-444-4444. We can be emailed at email@example.com.