Beaufort — Local and state officials joined Jarrett Bay Boatworks management and team members for a ribbon-cutting ceremony June 11 for all who aided in the purchase and operation of the new 300T Marine Travelift.
Jarrett Bay Marine Park tenants and employees were joined by representatives from the offices of Sens. Thom Tillis and Richard Burr, as well as U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration and Carteret Community College, county government and public administration officials for the celebration.
A grant from MARAD helped support the purchase of the 300-ton Marine Travelift, which is a first for a North Carolina shipyard. This new equipment was recently put into service and is already fostering economic growth for the coastal Carolina region, according to Jarrett Bay.
Benefits of the new lift include the direct hiring of more than 20 new employees at Jarrett Bay, in addition to new employment opportunities and business growth for the nearby ancillary businesses, such as engine and component operations. Furthermore, the surrounding community benefits from increased activity and tourism for non-endemics, such as hotels, restaurants and shops.
Obtaining the MARAD grant was an all-hands-on-deck endeavor as Ed Stack, Jarrett Bay’s vice president of administration and development, sought the professional advice of CCC President Dr. John Hauser, along with Tracy Mancini, the vice president of education at CCC. Jarrett Bay and CCC continue to work closely in a number of areas, including hiring and training.
Letters of recommendation and support also came flowing in from large maritime transport outfits, commercial fishing operations and Jarrett Bay Marine Park tenants praising the opportunity for greater lift capacity at the Beaufort yacht service yard. Fleet owners, tug operators and military vessels that were once turned away, unable to be hauled due to their vessel size or forced to siphon fluids and lubricants to meet the previous haulout abilities, now enjoy Jarrett Bay’s full-service capabilities on the yard, located on the Intracoastal Waterway in coastal North Carolina.
“I own 11 commercial fishing trawlers and have used Jarrett Bay to lift 2 of my smaller boats. The addition of this 300-ton lift will enable me to use their facility for my entire fleet,” said Chris Fulcher, owner of Fulcher’s Point Pride Seafood.
Aside from the added weight lifting capabilities, the new Travelift was configured to haul military craft, barges, ferries and sailing boats with significant beams and appendages that other lifts cannot accommodate.
According to the company, Jarrett Bay’s award-winning service yard hauls more than 1,000 boats annually, from sportfishing boats, motor yachts and sailboats to commercial trawlers and tugs, as well as government research and military vessels.
Historically, Jarrett Bay has had to turn down servicing an average of 30 larger vessels each year due to their size. The new 300-ton Travelift will allow these vessels to have their work done at Jarrett Bay’s North Carolina facility.
“We view this as a partnership that will help numerous large boats that operate along the Southern Central Atlantic Seaboard to have a convenient place to go when they are in need of service or repair.” Mr. Stack said. “No longer will larger vessels be forced to travel to Norfolk, Virginia or South Florida.”
In the release, Jarrett Bay especially thanked the congressional delegation, Sen. Burr, Sen. Tillis and the late Rep. Walter Jones Jr. for supporting their efforts. They thanked CCC, along with David Heller and Todd Hiller from the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration, plus local county and city council members and commissioners.