Savannah port to open late Tuesday or Wednesday after Irma clears

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Savannah port to open late Tuesday or Wednesday after Irma clears

The Georgia Ports Authority is working to have its Savannah operations open by the end of the day Tuesday or early Wednesday following a pelting by Tropical Storm Irma.

Griff Lynch, executive director of the authority, said the Savannah ports fared relatively well, though he said his agency is “still awaiting the final assessment on [the port in] Brunswick.”

Tropical Storm Irma caused the Savannah River to swell, sending water up to the edge of the Garden City Terminal docks and cranes on Monday, September 11, 2017. Photo provided by the Georgia Ports Authority. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Water from the Savannah River crested just below the edge of the docks at the Garden City Terminal.

The Brunswick port closed Friday and Savannah followed on Saturday as Irma approached. Some early forecasts had the Savannah area taking a direct hit from then-Hurricane Irma, but its track shifted west to the Gulf Coast of Florida.

A car on River Street in downtown Savannah is inundated by water from the Savannah River on Monday, September 11, 2017, following heavy rain and storm surge from Tropical Storm Irma. JENNIFER BRETT/JBRETT@AJC.COM The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Still, Lynch said, “the storm surge was significant.”

Lynch said some flooding has occurred along River Street, a popular tourist destination, but the port’s Ocean and Garden City terminals were spared any serious problems.

File image of the Port of Savannah. AJC File The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Flooding also was reported in other parts of the Georgia coast.

Lynch said the U.S. Coast Guard is expected to survey the Savannah River channel and river buoys, and he hopes the river can be reopened for ships Tuesday night or Wednesday morning.

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