Initial Damage Assessments in the Port of Canaveral Complete

PORT CANAVERAL, Fla. – Coast Guard crews have completed initial damage assessments in Port Canaveral and have modified the current port condition as Tropical Storm Fay passes Thursday at 4 p.m.

A team of Coast Guard inspectors and Coast Guard aids to navigation crew members found minimum discrepancies as a result of the storm, but further assessments are required to open the port to all vessel traffic. The Coast Guard Captain of the Port for Canaveral has opened the port with several restrictions in place to protect mariners.

Port Canaveral is open from the Sea Buoy, which is twelve miles offshore, to Barge Canal for any vessels with a draft of 30 feet or less. Coast Guard crews have not been able to conduct post-storm assessments of the Barge Canal and the Intracoastal Water Way due to weather. Vessels with a draft of 30 feet or less may transit to their perspective berths to conduct cargo operations.

Coast Guard crews will be conducting a more thorough assessment of Port Canaveral and surrounding navigable waterways over the next several days. The 30-foot draft restriction will remain in place across the port of Canaveral until crews can determine the depth of the channel and whether any shoaling has occurred as a result of Fay.

Aids to navigation crews have documented three buoys off station in Port Canaveral – buoys nine, 12 and 13. Aids to navigation crews from Coast Guard Aids to Navigation Team Ponce Inlet in New Smyrna Beach, Fla., will further assess and correct any aids that have been damaged by Fay beginning Friday morning.

The storm conditions from Fay have prevented 25 cargo and tanker ships from entering the ports of Port Canaveral, Jacksonville, Fla., and Brunswick, Ga. This modified port condition will allow cruise ship operations to run normally in Port Canaveral Friday.

Even though portions of Port Canaveral have been opened, mariners transiting in these areas should use extreme caution because shoaling and submerged debris may still pose a threat.

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