Port of Palacios, Texas
The Port of Palacios is a shallow water port that has traditionally served the shrimping industry. It is located in Matagorda County in Texas and connects with the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (GIWW) via a channel across the Matagorda Bay.
Over recent years, the shrimping and fishing industry has declined with the increase in imported seafood and higher gas prices. Palacios has diversified into other commercial operations that have seen an increase in the number of tugboats, barges, and ferries traversing the harbor.
New businesses have been established on the land near the port. These include a bulk cargo transportation company, a recreational vessel manufacturer and a tugboat and barge manufacturing company.
The connection with the GIWW has enabled the growth of bulk cargo transportation via barge. This port needs to be regularly dredged to accommodate the increased volume of barge traffic.
There are some development projects along this stretch of the Gulf coast that use the Port of Palacios to transport a variety of products. These include building materials and gravel, as well as fertilizer and grain for the agricultural concerns in the area.
Shrimp fishing has a long history in Palacios, stretching back to 1922. Even though the industry is faced with increasing challenges, it has endured, and many locals consider the area to be the shrimp capital of Texas. In 2012, over seven million tons of shrimp were offloaded at Palacios.
Other Commercial Operations
In recent years, commercial operations at Palacios have diversified to include a company employing over 65 craftsmen in the manufacture of tugboats and barges. This has seen the construction of fabrication facilities and welding platforms, a mobile paint facility and launch platform for barges.
Two shipyards have been constructed in the harbor. These facilities include a dry dock and offer fabrication, repair and refit services to visiting boats.
Safety Provisions for Workers
The safety of all workers in shipyards and ports is administered by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). They are responsible for ensuring that all employers, whether on land or sea, abide by the statutory regulations and standards with regard to worker safety.
Many shipyard activities require employees to work alone, often in remote locations. Statutory regulations require employers to account for each worker either visibly or by verbal communication. This must be done at regular intervals during a work assignment and at the end of the assignment or shift.
Employment in shipyards can be particularly dangerous, and all employers operating at this port must ensure that their workers have immediate access to medical care when injured. Under Title 29 of the United States Code, employers may use the services of off-site medical facilities if they can respond and provide emergency treatment within five minutes. If not, the port must make provision for on-site first aid services.
If you suffered an injury while working at Palacios, fill out the form with your information, and we will assist you.