Business As Usual at the Ports - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

09/16/03

Business As Usual at the Ports

The military is also not taking any chances with Hurricane Isabel. The Navy has been ordered to evacuated some of its ships and send them out to sea for protection, while other ships could be diverted to safer ports. Forty Navy vessels are being shipped out to sea from bases in Norfolk, Virginia, and Earle, New Jersey. The military says it costs millions, but the damage from the storm could be even more costly.

In Savannah, the ports are still moving full speed ahead, and it's business as usual. "Since we're quite confident that the hurricane isn't going to strike here, we haven't had to do much preparation at all," said Robert Morris of the Georgia Ports Authority. "However, we have been going through our emergency contingency plans."

The port says it is prepared to protect cargo and ships in case the forecasts are wrong, and they are also prepared to handle some ships from other ports north of here in case they are sent to Savannah for safety.

"I would think that once it does hit landfall, there will be some time where they'll be diverted, cargo and ships," said Morris. "When it happens and wherever it goes, we will be prepared."

But right now the port is calm and so are the employees working to keep things moving. "At this time, we have not heard of any diversions, either ships or cargo," said Morris. "However we are prepared to help our sister ports and reach out to them in any way we can."

Reported by: Kim Angelastro, kangelastro@wtoc.com

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