03 October 2012 22:13 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--September chemical tanker arrivals on the Houston Ship Channel jumped by 54% year on year, continuing the surge on the waterway in 2012 from petroleum-product shipments, according to data released on Wednesday.
The number of chemical ships that entered the Texas waterway in September totalled 156, compared with 101 vessels in September 2011, according to data from the Greater Houston Port Bureau (GHPB), which tracks ship traffic on the channel.
The GHPB arrival data is a measure of overall ship traffic on the Houston waterway.
September marked the 12th straight month of big gains for chemical tankers. The trend of higher traffic on the channel began in late summer 2011 from a boost in refined products and chemical shipments and also refinery shutdowns earlier this year in the US Virgin Islands and Aruba that spurred US exports.
In the first nine months this year, chemical tanker arrivals shot up 86% over arrivals during the same period of 2011. The rise in chemical tanker arrivals showed bigger gains by far than any other vessel category from January through September.
Crude tanker traffic, which accounts for the greatest number of ships, declined by nearly 20% in the first nine months, to 2,224 tankers this year compared with 2,763 tankers in the first nine months of 2011, according to the GHPB data.
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