Ergon Logistics Built to Handle Low Water Events

Mon., Oct 17, 2022 | Ergon

Michael Carpenter is Senior Port Captain for Magnolia Marine Transport Company (MMT), in Vicksburg, Mississippi. Part of the Ergon family of companies, MMT operates one of the largest inland waterways petroleum transportation fleets in the United States. With 24 towboats and more than 88 barges, they transport asphalt, crude oil, process oils, fuel oil and additional products on the Mississippi River and intracoastal waterways of the Gulf of Mexico.

Due to the low water levels from recent dry weather and drought conditions, the Mississippi River is low enough to create transportation issues for cargo ships and barges, with many companies across the marine industry having to significantly slow down or even stop deliveries.

Carpenter spoke with Mississippi Public Broadcasting about the ways MMT is adapting to these extremely low river levels — https://www.mpbonline.org/blogs/news/dry-conditions-causing-low-water-levels-on-mississippi-river/. MMT’s operations plans ensure that security of supply is protected in situations like these where loads need to be lightened to reduce draft and traffic is slower due to low water or congestion along certain segments of the route.

Ergon is a global organization delivering products and services essential to manufacturing and infrastructure needs to customers in more than 90 countries around the world. The diversified logistics provided by a variety of businesses, including MMT, mean that when one area faces hardships, others are ready to step up to get the job done. In this case, when waterways are impacted, Ergon’s trucks and railcars can assist with transportation of products.

That same ability to adapt is one of MMT’s strengths. According to Carpenter, “Challenges are nothing new for MMT. We take them as they come. Whether it’s near record-high water levels, hiring employees for our growing fleet of boats and barges, or our present low water situation, adapting to an ever-changing environment is one of our major strengths.”