Port Canaveral Resumes Waterside Operations - Port operating restrictions removed by U.S. Coast Guard

9/14/2017

Port Canaveral, FL – Today, the U.S. Coast Guard Captain of the Port (COTP) removed waterside restrictions for Port Canaveral to facilitate full resumption of commercial vessel operations. The Port is continuing to address issues related to infrastructure, specifically the degraded water supply to fully regain operational capability. These limitations affect the Port's firefighting capability, availability of safe drinking water, and sanitation facilities.
 
Port Canaveral’s pre-storm preparations and mitigation efforts prior to Irma's arrival helped to reduce the risk of catastrophic damage to the Port's buildings and operations. Initial damage assessment inspection reports indicate mostly cosmetic damage to Port facilities and structures, along with significant debris removal requirements.  At the Port’s Jetty Park, the fishing pier and beach sustained significant storm damage and have been closed to the public pending repairs while the campground, Pavilion and store appear to be in good shape.  The Park will remain closed to public access pending debris removal and further engineering assessments, and assured public water supply remains a concern.
 
Returning the Port to full operational status was hampered by the loss of power and failure of the City of Cocoa water system which supplies the Port.

Business owners and operators in Port Canaveral have returned to their facilities to continue with their recovery and clean up operations, and some restaurants in the Port's Cove District have reopened for business.  However, other commercial operations at Port Canaveral are continuing to be hampered until the public water supply is fully restored by the City of Cocoa, and assured to be stable and safe for consumption.
 
Due to concern for reliable water supplies from the City of Cocoa water system, Canaveral Fire Rescue will maintain established fire suppression capabilities on stand-by basis using water tankers and pump operations.
 
Due to the critical fuel supply provided throughout the state by Seaport Canaveral, the Florida Department of Transportation has requested that the Coast Guard issue a temporary deviation to the SR 401 bridge operations to only allow the bridge to open from 12 Noon  to 2:00 PM daily for vessel traffic; the SR 401 bridge would remain closed at all other times. The result would be that vessels with an air draft of approximately 24 feet or greater would need to be controlled due to their impact on bridge operations, and only be permitted to pass through the Canaveral Lock operated by the Corps of Engineers during the 12 Noon  to 2:00 PM bridge openings. Vessels with an air draft less than approximately 24 feet may request to transit through the Lock as per existing procedures and transit under the bridge without impacting bridge operations.  This would only apply while the fuel supply for the State is at a critical level. The Lock and bridge will resume normal operations when the State lifts the requirement with the Coast Guard and Army Corps.