Lake Charles, La. Operations to be Suspended
(JACKSONVILLE, FL; May 4, 1999) Crowley American Transport announced today it will consolidate its U.S. Gulf – Puerto Rico service in Jacksonville within the next 45 days and suspend its terminal operations in Lake Charles, La.
This change will allow Crowley to absorb the cargo into its highly efficient Jacksonville operations. The company will utilize Jacksonville’s strong intermodal connections to support a successful transition. The net result will be enhanced service for Puerto Rico shippers, who will have access to multiple, weekly, fixed-day sailings between Jacksonville and San Juan instead of one sailing every eight days over Lake Charles.
Crowley American Transports Central America services will continue to be operated as they are today through other Gulf ports. Crowley Marine Transports breakbulk service between the Gulf and Latin America and the Caribbean is not effected.
Crowley established its 28-acre Lake Charles Ro/Ro terminal in 1980 and has approximately 100 administrative and union employees based there.
“We have a quality workforce in Lake Charles and individuals who have served this company with distinction,” said P. Elliott Burnside, President of Crowley American Transport. “We have put programs in place to assist these employees in locating other employment in the Lake Charles area and to help them transition into new jobs.”
“Suspending our Lake Charles operation was dictated by market conditions and non-compensatory rates,” Burnside said. “We have tried for years to establish ocean freight rates at Lake Charles to support the cost of providing this service, but they have continued to deteriorate significantly.”
“We realized that change was necessary given the very challenging operating and market environment, which presently exists,” he said. “To maintain our role as the leading carrier between the Americas, we must not only explore new processes and approaches to the way we conduct our business, but also how we position our assets and employees to best serve the needs of our customers.”
“In this case, we determined that with northeast Floridas excellent intermodal connections, we could serve our Puerto Rico customers more efficiently, cost effectively and with faster transit times from Jacksonville where we have several fixed-day-of-the-week sailings,” Burnside said.
Headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., Crowley American Transport provides cargo common carrier services between Canada, the United States and countries in Central America, South America and the Caribbean. The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of Oakland-based Crowley Maritime Corp., founded in 1892.