Port of Galveston, Texas

The Port of Galveston, Texas was established as a trading post in 1825 by a proclamation issued by the Congress of Mexico. At that time the land was not yet part of the United States. Today it provides more than 850 acres in a premier location for both cargo and cruise ships. Total trade was 11,406,750 cargo value measured in short tons, as of 2013 data.

The port was home to Imperial Sugar Company operations for the import of sugar from Cuba during the early 1900s. In 1954 railway and vehicle connectivity was established to connect Galveston Island to Pelican Island. It has been expanded and modernized over the years.

Today the docks handle a variety of vessels including both cargo and passenger ships. It is also known to many as Galveston Wharves as it was previously named when part of it was privately owned. The area includes both Galveston Island and Pelican Island.

Cargo Vessels

The shipping lines that regularly serve here include ARC, Del Monte, Hoegh Autoliners, K Line Ro Ro and WWL. These vessels regularly dock here to load and unload cargo. The port is designated as Foreign Trade Zone #36 as part of the Foreign-Trade Zone Program (FTZ). This program, created by the U.S. government, is designed to help increase global trade and facilitate international trade.

A designated trade zone allows a variety of operational activities to take place on the docks. This includes such items as assembling, packing, distribution, testing, labeling, repairing and general handling and processing of products and materials. Importantly, products can be stored in the zone, and while doing so, it is exempt from inventory taxes.

Passenger Ships

There are two terminal facilities that accommodate cruise ship passengers from around the world. Some of the cruise lines that utilize the docks include Carnival Cruise Line, Disney Cruise Line, and Royal Caribbean Cruise Line. The first cruise ship operation here began in 1989 with day cruises. In 1990, the Galveston Cruise Ship Terminal was completed at the cost of $2 million. Carnival Cruise Lines began operations here in 2000, with other lines soon following.

Types of Accidents

There are various types of accidents that may occur in port. Some dock and pier accidents include:

  • Container accidents
  • Accidents with cranes and winches
  • Gangway incidents
  • Electrocutions
  • Slip and falls
  • Mooring line incidents
  • Collisions between vessels
  • Docking crashes
  • Fires or explosions
  • Forklift mishaps
  • Hazardous materials spills
  • Structural collapse

The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) provides guidelines for safety when working on cargo ships. Workers who are injured as a result of accidents that occur in port may be protected by the Jones Act, which covers maritime accidents in the United States.

If you were seriously injured as the result of a dock or pier accident in the Port of Galveston you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Contact our legal team to learn how we can help protect your rights. Fill out the form for more information.

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