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Tuesday, October 4, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesWAPA to Build New Mooring Bollards for Big Oil Barges

WAPA to Build New Mooring Bollards for Big Oil Barges

The V.I. Water and Power Authority governing board approved on Monday a $375,000 no-bid contract with ABC Concepts to design and quickly build two new line bollards at its Krum Bay dock to allow 80,000-barrel fuel oil ships to dock there starting later this month.

The bollards are giant steel cleats for tying up large vessels.

The WAPA board met in emergency session Monday to approve the contract because Executive Director Hugo Hodge Jr. and Chief Operating Officer Gregory Rhymer said the work needed to start right away, to accommodate Trafigura shipments in December.

"This is on an emergency basis so we can get the fuel supply uninterrupted, for this district in particular," Hodge said.

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WAPA’s contract with Puerto Rico-based Trafigura AG calls for it to deliver directly to St. Thomas, eliminating the need for WAPA to store and re-ship the fuel from Krum Bay to St. Croix. It also calls for monthly delivery of one 80,000-barrel barge and one 30,000-barrel barge per month to St. Thomas and three monthly barges to St. Croix of 30,000 barrels each of No. 2 fuel oil.

WAPA entered into a contract with Trafigura recently after it was forced to seek a new fuel supplier because the current provider, Hovensa, announced it would no longer supply fuel oil to the utility after June 30.

Hovensa later offered an alternate option to deliver fuel oil at discounted rates until the end of the year. Trafigura’s price is lower than the rate Hovensa would have currently charged.

Only very recently did the Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Trafigura approve the proposed design for the bollards, requesting a few changes along the way.

Hodge said he requested a waiver to the competitive bidding process to get the work done right away. ABC Concepts has the regular annual contract for repairs and maintenance at the plant, so they are ready and able to begin immediately, he said.

Rhymer added that WAPA has the Army Corps of Engineers and EPA permits in hand "and there is a need to proceed, like, yesterday."

The work should take only a couple of days, once it starts, and should be complete by Dec. 13, Rhymer said.

ABC is already on retainer, but the cost of this work exceeds the amount budgeted by WAPA’s board for ABC, so the cost, as well as the waiver of competitive bidding, need board approval, he said.

The board meeting was held remotely, with some members participating by videoconference between WAPA offices in both districts, and others calling in by telephone.

Voting to approve the waiver and the contract were Chairman Gerald Groner, Planning and Natural Resources Commissioner Alicia Barnes, Licensing and Consumer Affairs Commissioner Wayne Biggs, Energy Director Karl Knight, Juanita Young, Donald Francois, Brenda Benjamin, Noel Loftus and Cheryl Boynes-Jackson.

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