Port Comfort, Texas
The Port of Port Lavaca – Point Comfort has a trade volume of 10,888,384 short tons, as of rankings issued in 2013, putting it at #50 in the U.S. That includes 5,223,082 tons of foreign imports, 2,501,123 tons of foreign exports, and a domestic total of 3,164,179 tons. The port supports chemical manufacturing industries in Texas and the economy of Calhoun County; the transport of cargo includes chemicals, petrochemicals, agricultural fertilizer, and aluminum ore.
Over 16,500 jobs depend on activity conducted at Lavaca, while about 5,300 jobs are directly related to transportation, manufacturing, and construction supported by it. Port-related businesses generate annual revenues of $2 billion.
Waterways serving the port include the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway and the Matagorda Ship Channel. Operated by the Calhoun Port Authority, it includes a liquid cargo terminal with three docks for liquid cargo and a 1,100-foot pier equipped with two ship berths. A dry bulk dock opened in 2011 can handle carriers up to 740 feet long. It has a traveling spiral conveyor unloading tower for simplified access to cargo holds. Local industrial sites are served by a continuous conveyor system fed by the tower.
General cargo facilities include a dock accommodating up to 750-foot-long vessels and a 25,000-square-foot warehouse. A transit shed is integrated into this building. Rail access to the building, open storage, truck scales, and cargo handling equipment are also available. The port also has a six-slip barge terminal, public barge staging area, and a multi-purpose dock that can support heavy equipment, cargo, and roll-on/roll-off operations. Numerous types of ocean vessels are accommodated by the ship berth.
The local waters have supported seafaring activity for over 300 years. In 1840, a seaport was built on the southwest end of Matagorda Bay, which prospered for 40 years. Two major hurricanes struck in the late 1800s and the local community was abandoned, but Port Lavaca became an active fishing port in the early 1900s. Facilities were expanded in the 1960s to support ocean-going vessels. In the 1980s, large corporations established operations there, and chemical cargo handling facilities were built in more recent years.
Like any port, the complex at Port Comfort, Texas, has many hazards. Vehicle, container, crane, and structural accidents can cause serious injuries and even deaths. Fires and explosions can occur because hazardous materials and ignition sources are present. Slips, trips, and falls are commonplace in maritime environments. Contributing factors range from fatigue and lack of training to negligence on the part of employers. Although accidents sometimes cannot be avoided, there are many factors that can be mitigated to reduce the risk of them happening. If you have been injured at Port Lavaca while working, fill out our online form to find out what benefits may be available under maritime law.