First Shipment of propane to arrive in Haiti

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti – The first shipment of propane following the earthquake in Haiti is expected to arrive at the Thor fuel pier, in Port-au-Prince Harbor, Sunday.

The U.S. Coast Guard, along with the U.S. Army, and U.S. Navy have worked to improve safe access to the port which has been partially reopened since Jan. 21, 2010. The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Oak, a 225-foot sea going buoy tender homeported in Charleston, S.C., and members of the Coast Guard's Maritime Transportation System Recovery Unit (MTSRU) have conducted a survey of the harbor's waters and placed an additional two buoys marking the navigable channel and surveyed two more buoys to ensure their accuracy and functionality.

"The pending arrival of the fuel to the port represents a major step ahead in helping the people of Port-au-Prince," said Capt. Scott Buschman, acting commander of the Seventh Coast Guard District. "The arrival of this fuel and the continued delivery of goods and supplies to assist with the on-going humanitarian relief efforts would not be possible without the combined efforts and expertise of multiple agencies who's collective work allowed critical supplies and equipment to arrive in Port-au-Prince by water."

The Coast Guard Cutter Oak is serving as the vessel traffic service for the Port-au-Prince harbor, and is responsible for monitoring the safe passage and arrival of ships into Haiti. All inbound ships are required to give the crew of Oak 24-hour notification prior to their arrival.

The Oak crew, and the MTSRU, are working with Haitian port officials and the maritime community to continue to re-establish the port. This effort is part of the unified U.S. government's earthquake response in support of the Haitian government.

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