Port of Fernandina Positioned To Speed Aid to Bahamas

Submitted by Laura DiBella
Port of Fernandina
September 8, 2019

FERNANDINA BEACH, FL (September 6, 2019)Having successfully escaped the wrath of Hurricane Dorian, the Nassau County, Florida, community, home to the Port of Fernandina in Northeast Florida, is positioned to help those who were not so fortunate, particularly the neighboring Bahamas.

“We feel blessed to have survived this horrific storm unharmed, and because of that, have been overwhelmed with requests to help our Bahamian partners,” stated Laura DiBella, who serves as the Executive Director for the Nassau County Economic Development Board, as well as Port Director for the Port of Fernandina. “Discussions are underway to hold countywide fundraisers and collect much needed supplies destined for the Bahamas. We also see an ideal opportunity to assist with our newly constituted container barge service, as its shallow draft can transport cargo to parts of the island that may not have the capacity to support container ships due to current restrictions.”

Chris Ragucci, Chief Executive Officer, Worldwide Terminals Fernandina, adds that the Port of Fernandina is immediately available to receive cargo for relief efforts for freight forwarders and shippers.  “The objective is to get aid to these people as quickly as possible and we have the resources to help, including berths, on-dock warehouses and terminal storage space that is ideally suited to handle relief cargoes being assembled for the Bahamas”.

In addition, Ragucci says the port’s available capacity and location in Florida is ideally suited to speed shipments to the impacted Caribbean island chain.

“We have the capability to handle any type of cargo, including containerized (stuffing & flat racks), breakbulk, project cargo, machinery, vehicles and heavy lift.  We are equally suited to receive cargoes by truck and rail, with on-dock rail service through the CSX rail system,” he explains. “We have an experienced team of cargo handling professionals at the port, and we can provide end-to-end solutions with our trucking and logistics arm.”

He says that his firm will do everything possible to speed the flow of relief efforts to the Bahamas with the utmost promptness and least amount of expense and bureaucracy. “The key here is getting supplies to those that need them as quickly as possible,” he adds.

Companies working to get aid to the Bahamas can contact DiBella (561.756.3132) or Ragucci at (904.990.1400) or go to the port’s website at www.portoffernandina.org.

The Port of Fernandina is a rail-served, natural deep-water port on the Atlantic seaboard adjoining the U.S. mainland, just 2.2 miles from the open ocean.  It handles a variety of cargoes, including steel, aluminum, machinery, forest products, project cargo and manufactured goods.  It has 250,000 square-feet of on-site warehouse space, 100,000+ square-feet off-port, and 10 acres of open storage, all which sits minutes away from a new six-lane A1A/SR 200 highway enabling easy access to both Interstates 95 and 10.  The Port of Fernandina supports more than 65 direct jobs and hundreds of indirect jobs throughout Nassau County and contributes greatly to the local economy. www.portoffernandina.com.