TOTE ships to sail during Hurricane Matthew

Tote Maritime to sail ships during Hurricane Matthew

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., -- As Hurricane Matthew brews in the Caribbean, TOTE Maritime officials say they plan to continue their cargo schedule. 

Tote is the owner of the doomed El Faro cargo ship that sank last year during Hurricane Joaquin, killing 33 crew members.

However, business is not stopping for TOTE Maritime along their Jacksonville to Puerto Rico route. 

Tuesday, a TOTE ship will leave Jacksonville for Puerto Rico and another will leave San Jaun for Jacksonville. 

The ship that replaced the El Faro is the Isla Bella, considered one of the best in the market.

Its a new ship that is run by natural gas. 

First Coast News Meteorologist Tim Deagan says this week, the water along the cargo shipping route can get as high as 40 feet. 

"I cannot imagine a more serious situation. This hurricane is more intense than Joaquin. It is larger than Joaquin."

We spoke to TOTE officials about if they plan to make any changes. We sent a list of questions and this was their only response.

"Our crews are trained to deal with unfolding weather situations and are prepared to respond to emerging situations while at sea. TOTE Services has great confidence in its highly experienced officers." 

Friday, the Isla Bella will make another trip to Puerto Rico. 

The ship is scheduled to depart Jacksonville at midnight and it will also be when Hurricane Matthew is projected to be closest to the First Coast.


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