Alaska Public Media
By: Zachariah Hughes
An enormous share of Alaska’s food, fuel, and supplies come into the state through just a single access point: the Port of Anchorage. Even small communities in distant parts of the state rely on the steady flow of goods over the port’s docks. It’s a critical supply-chain that connects hundreds of communities, and is under threat from deteriorating infrastructure.
On a recent crystal clear morning, semi-trucks barreled up and down long drawbridges connecting the asphalt docks of the port to the belly of a massive container ship. Tractor-trailers hauled full 40-foot metal containers out from within.
Twice a week, two cargo ships travel 66 hours from Tacoma, Washington to dock at the port. This one is run by Tote Maritime, and for hours a frenzy of heavy equipment moves 485 containers onto shore. According to officials with the city, the port, and the shipping companies, the unloading process here is fundamental for Alaska’s main supply chain.
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