Port of Clay County
Clay County Port is situated at River Mile 338.5 on the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway close to West Point, Mississippi. It is also known as the Raymond D. Lucas Memorial Port. It is accessible by Highway 45 via Old Highway 50 and by Highway 82 via US-14. The port is situated on a waterway that was man-made in the 1980s to provide connectivity between the Tennessee and Tombigbee Rivers to the Gulf Coast. The waterway extends more than 230 miles including ports in both Mississippi and Alabama. It provides a method of transportation directly to the coast, and from there, around the globe.
The port has a variety of facilities that cater to barge fleets. There is a 555-foot barge slip and available storage for ten barges. There are six mooring dolphins and a 60-foot steel bulkhead dock with a crane cell. There is also loading and unloading on a 120-foot crane dock. Truck scales are available on site. The port is ideal for general freight transfer of general cargo as well as specialized materials such as coal, salt, lime, rock and fertilizer and agricultural products.
There is a 20-acre area covered with crushed stone that can be used for staging. A steel grain storage facility has a capacity of more than 15,000 tons. Additionally, there is a 1,000,000 gallon liquid fertilizer storage tank. General cargo transfer services are available. A facility that has a system of conveyors is located in a large storage building. It includes partitions that allow segregation of products.
Soybeans, wheat, and corn are among the most important exports here. Local producers utilize Raymond D. Lucas Memorial Port to ship their products to markets across the globe. The Tenn-Tom Waterway provides direct access to the Gulf of Mexico without having to utilize the Mississippi River. The location has available land for future development adjacent to the site. One downfall is that it does not have any rail connection available on the site.
In December 2015, an accident occurred at the port. Two barges owned by the Tom Soya Grain Company broke loose from their moorings in a heavy rain. The runaway barges hit into a dam in Columbus. The barges had to be salvaged. First, one barge hit the bridge, then the other hit the first one and began to sink. One was partly submerged and lying atop the other. The intact barge was removed first. Salvage operations had a difficult job of removing the vessel that was underwater. The total cleanup took several weeks due to weather conditions.
While no injuries were reported in this incident, barge accidents can cause severe harm to those working on and around them. Employers must provide safe working conditions for employees. If an accident occurs because of an employer’s negligence, the employee may be able to take legal action. If you were seriously injured as the result of an accident at Raymond D. Lucas Memorial Port, we can help protect your rights. Contact our office by filling out the online form, and we will review your case and discuss your options with you.