11 December 2012 18:05 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS)--November chemical tanker arrivals on the Houston Ship Channel increased by 47% year on year, continuing the surge on the waterway in 2012 from petroleum-product shipments, according to data released on Tuesday.
The number of chemical ships that entered the Texas waterway in November totalled 147, compared with 99 vessels in the same month of 2011, according to data from the Greater Houston Port Bureau (GHPB), which tracks ship traffic on the channel.
The bureau's arrival data is a measure of overall ship traffic on the Houston waterway. November marked the 14th straight month of large gains for chemical tankers.
The boom 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 11 months this year, chemical tanker arrivals soared by 78% over arrivals during the same period in 2011. The rise in chemical tanker arrivals showed bigger gains by far than any other vessel category from January through November.
Crude tanker traffic, which accounts for the greatest number of ships on the waterway, fell by 19% in the first 11 months to 2,644 tankers this year, compared with 3,281 tankers in the first 11 months of 2011, according to the GHPB data.
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