SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – Crowley Fuels LLC, the Alaska-based petroleum transportation, distribution and sales unit of Crowley Maritime Corporation, announced today the completion of a three-month mission in Puerto Rico in support of Foster Fuels, a Brookneal, Va., based emergency response fuel supply contractor for the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA).
Initially, in early October, Crowley supported Foster’s mobilization, shipping more than 130 fuel trucks aboard a Crowley liner services vessel from Jacksonville to San Juan, with multiple follow-up deliveries in subsequent sailings providing additional materiel and resources.
Additionally, due to the overwhelming demand for CDL/HAZMAT-certified fuel truck drivers throughout areas affected by this summer’s active hurricane season, Crowley further supported Foster’s Puerto Rico mission, dispatching six of its own qualified fuel truck drivers from Alaska to the island.
“The safe and successful delivery of fuel trucks and drivers demonstrates the effectiveness of Crowley’s businesses and people when they are combined for a project with stakes as high as this one,” said Sean Thomas, vice president, Crowley Fuels. “The efforts of the entire Crowley team: drivers, mariners and scores of others in support, have been instrumental in returning critical services and infrastructure in Puerto Rico to operational status. We commend their non-stop efforts, which took place under difficult circumstances.”
The Crowley Fuels employees dispatched to the island include Luann Blodgett, Fred Parish, Tom Martin, Herman Reich, Brandon “Billy” Hills and Tim Michaels (pictured). These six workers, who are represented by the U.S. Steel Workers Union, performed a combined total of 2,200 hours distributing fuel to businesses and residents on the island, and are expected to arrive home in Alaska today. Since Hurricane Maria struck, Crowley has transported 15,066 commercial loads and 6,077 loads for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), providing rebuilding supplies, water, food, generators and heavy equipment to help to aid people affected by the storm. Currently, the company is providing shipments that will transport up to 65,000 power poles to Puerto Rico to help restore the island’s power grid.
To speed the flow of cargo from the mainland, Crowley has expanded its vessel fleet with seven flat-deck barges to raise capacity by 67 percent, which has allowed the company to have a vessel call in San Juan almost every day since the storm.
The logistics team continues its support of the FEMA as well with supply chain management, long-distance and local trucking, deconsolidation, cross-docking and warehousing services on the mainland and on the island.
Crowley, which has 300 employees in Puerto Rico, has served the island since 1954, longer than any U.S. Jones Act carrier in the trade.