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PHOTO BY GEORGIA PORTS AUTHORITY

SOUTH ATL ANTIC DIVISION

20-mile-long channel extending into the Atlantic Ocean, had already been deepened to 49 feet at low tide. “The Savannah District continues to manage the intensely complicated task of coordinating dredge actions and placement of dredged material to ensure safety, compliance with contract requirements, and timeliness to reach our goal of completing this major deepening in January 2022,” said Col. Daniel H. Hibner, commander of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Savannah District. “This effort ensures the harbor will improve the ability of Savannah to meet the demands of today and tomorrow.” With finely tuned coordination, each dredge and its associated support vessels must be at the right place at the right time. The two smaller maintenance dredges remove built-up shoaling and sediment, then move on, followed by the larger deepening dredges. All vessels must move aside whenever commercial vessels enter their area; in addition, workers must move pipelines leading from the dredges to 56

The dredge Charleston of Norfolk Dredging is shown deepening the inner harbor of the Savannah River May 28, 2020, as part of the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project. The project is on schedule for completion in January 2022. Garden City Terminal at the Port of Savannah is shown in the background.

the dredged material disposal areas. After commercial traffic passes, everything must return to continue the routine. All dredges work 24 hours a day, every day. “The cooperation we receive from GPA [Georgia Ports Authority], our dredging contractors, the harbor pilots, the Coast Guard, and others demonstrates the dedication this community has for deepening the Savannah Harbor,” Hibner said. The federal government and the state of Georgia share the cost of the deepening. The state’s Department of Transportation and the GPA serve as the state sponsors for the project.

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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers: Building Strong, Serving the Nation and the Armed Forces, 2020-2021  

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