Hurricane Sandy was wake up call for ports say corrosion experts

That sobering truth has resonated with the American Association of Port Authorities, which has been calling for more investment recently.

By ·

As winter approaches, the nation’s supply chain infrastructure will continue to become damaged from seasonal elements such as freezing rain, sleet and snow.

That sobering truth has resonated with the American Association of Port Authorities, which has been calling for more investment recently. And for Rick Grant, a principal owner of Russell Corrosion Consultants (RCC), now is the time to increase spending – particularly on ports.

“These represent the most exposed assets in our transportation network,” he said. “The marine elements can degrade not piers, but whole seawalls that are crucial to a port’s sustainable operations.”

The Columbia, Maryland-based company has been consulting with the Port of NY/NJ for more than a decade, added Grant.

“Super storm Sandy was an equal opportunity destroyer when it came to the devastating impacts on the East Coast’s infrastructure,” he said.

As many in the nation quickly witnessed, New York City’s transit system flooded as never witnessed before. That was only one example of the storms crippling effects on the infrastructure. Why was it so bad?

One main reason is the corrosive effects of saltwater on metal (train tracks and surrounding support structures). High chloride content is a key factor for accelerating corrosion and is effects on metallic infrastructure.

However this wasnt limited to just transit systems.

Much of the coast’s water supply systems, pumping stations, sewer pipelines, natural gas lines, power stations, marine support piles, bridge supports, and anything metallic had been compromised due to the super storm.

“States, agencies, utilities, and the federal government now have the expensive, time consuming and unenviable task of inspecting this affected infrastructure that millions of people have taken for granted in there everyday lives to ensure its proper working order,” said Grant.

But the good news, he said, is that business has never been better.

“Ports and other government entities are among our best customers,” he said. “We have been making record profits over the past three years, while many other businesses have been struggling to recover from the recession.”

Further evidence of that came when RCC) announced the acquisition of Blackstone Group LTD, a premiere corrosion engineering firm, headquartered in San Francisco, CA. last month.

“San Francisco, is another very old city in need of major repair,” said Grant.


About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

Infrastructure · Logistics · Ports · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
The View from the New “Single Window”
The single window, officially known as the "International Trade Data System," operates via the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency's Automated Commercial Environment (ACE) platform, and serves as a single point of contact for all trade filings.
Download Today!
From the March 2017 Issue
WMS vendors are stepping up to the plate and developing functionalities and solutions that meet the complex needs of today’s companies. Our top analysts take a peek into these developments and discuss the DC of the future and the software that will support it.
5 Supply Chain Trends Happening Now
2017 Warehouse/DC Equipment Survey: Investment up as service pressures rise
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
2017 Trucking Regulations & Infrastructure Update
In this session our panel brings shippers up to date on the state of transportation regulations. Discussion will revolve around regulatory reform, aspects of the federal highway bill and what the transportation landscape looks like in the early days of the Trump administration.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
LM Exclusive: Major Modes Join E-commerce Mix
While last mile carriers receive much of the attention, the traditional modal heavyweights are in...
ASEAN Logistics: Building Collectively
While most of the world withdraws inward, Southeast Asia is practicing effective cooperation between...

2017 Rate Outlook: Will the pieces fall into place?
Trade and transport analysts see a turnaround in last year’s negative market outlook, but as...
Logistics Management’s Top Logistics News Stories 2016
From mergers and acquisitions to regulation changes, Logistics Management has compiled the most...