Lightering the Load to Meet Underserved Ports

PIERS products empower our customers by providing them with valuable insights that help them make informed and profitable decisions.  As the leader in global trade intelligence, PIERS has the most comprehensive database of transactional data passing through U.S. and international ports.

But what happens when cargo is offloaded prior to coming in to port?  Lightering is the process of transferring cargo between vessels of different sizes, usually to reduce a vessel’s draft in order to enter port facilities which can’t accept larger vessels.  Although not nearly as common place as it was at the turn of the century, lightering is still a fairly common practice among the oil tanking industry.


Recently, a major oil company approached PIERS for help in assessing the effects of lightering on oil imports to the US. They wanted to know specifically:

  • How much fuel was being offloaded before coming to port?
  • Was their competition underreporting the volume they were bringing in?
  • Was their competition offloading to smaller ships to service smaller ports?

By running a special customized report, PIERS was able to deliver a wealth of data to their client, giving them valuable insight into how lightering was effecting oil imports.  Armed with this information, they not only have a clearer picture of what their competition is doing, they also have the ability to assess opportunities in smaller ports that may be underserved due to lack of access by larger tankers.

For more information about how PIERS data can help grow your business, visit us online or call +1-973-776-8660 to speak with a solutions expert.


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One Response to “Lightering the Load to Meet Underserved Ports”

  1. Celestino Jerseydevil Faginas Says:

    I think there should be more bigger ships coming into port to unload oil and/or other fuels. The volume of large ships coming into port to unload or load whatever it’s picking up/dropping off will depend on how much port space there is for these kinds of ships. The real question is, will a particular company have enough money to do something like that?

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