Eastern Shipbuilding hit hard by Hurricane Michael

Hurricane Michael hit Panama City, Florida-based Eastern Shipbuilding Group’s Allanton shipyard with category 4 hurricane-force winds, causing damaged reported to be as much as $75m, with several UK-based insurers said to be exposed to marine construction losses.

Allanton Yard is located about 15 miles east of Eastern’s headquarters and main yard in Panama City, and just a few miles west of Mexico Beach, Florida, where Hurricane Michael hit land.

 “Both shipyards have taken hurricane damage,” ESG president Joey D’Isernia said. Hurricane surge swept a nearly finished 261ft Alaska factory trawler, the North Star, into Saint Andrews Bay where it was resting on its starboard side. The trawler was built by ESG for Seattle-based Glacier Fish Co and was launched in April 2018. The vessel was scheduled to be completed and depart for Alaska in November.

“The boat was nearing completion, and because of all the destruction down there, we have not been able to survey the vessel,” Jim Johnson, president of Glacier Fish, told the Seattle Times.

Other projects at Eastern include the new Ollis-class vessels for New York’s Staten Island Ferry, and Tier 4 tugs for McAllister Towing and Transportation Co.

In September, Eastern Shipbuilding announced it had been awarded the construction contract for the first Coast Guard offshore patrol cutter, but this project was not set to begin until early next year.