The international shipping season is underway at the state’s northernmost port. Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor Director Rick Heimann says the arrival of the year’s first ocean vessel is "always energizing for businesses and our work force."
The year’s first European arrival was a more than 600-foot bulk carrier called the M.V. Lubie. Its captain was presented Friday with the Port of Indiana "Steel Stein" to commemorate the occasion. More than 6,600 tons of Dutch-made steel was offloaded before the ship moved on to Milwaukee. The Port of Indiana is one of the country’s top ports for inbound and outbound steel and metal-related product shipments.
Heimann says "the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway provide a global connection for Indiana companies to ship goods to and from world markets. Having access to this international trade route is vitally important for the U.S. and Indiana economies as well as numerous transportation and logistics jobs.
The St. Lawrence Seaway opened March 21 for the 58th international shipping season. It closes in the winter for maintenance. The port stays open to handle domestic traffic all year-round. The northwest Indiana port handled its second-highest tonnage in more than two decades last year with 2.8 million tons of cargo. 2014 set the bar at the 45-year-old operation.