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Port Manatee Boasts Coast Guard-Approved Training Program

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Port Manatee Boasts Coast Guard-Approved Training Program

Seaport security, security planning, vulnerability risks and assessments and more are just a few things addressed during a three-day training FSO course offered by Port Manatee.

The course – which earned previous certification in 2005 by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration, is now acknowledged and approved by the U.S. Coast Guard.

We are pleased to have gained this heightened level of federal certification for this vital security officer training,” said David St. Pierre, Port Manatee’s director of public safety and security.

“Over the past 15 years, more than 1,150 graduates from throughout the nation have completed approved FSO training at Port Manatee, which continues to be the only seaport in the United States certified to offer such a course.”

David St. Pierre, Port Manatee’s director of public safety and security, leads the port’s facility security officer training, which has gained new certification from the U.S. Coast Guard. Photo: Port Mantee

Port security and retired Coast Guard officers are in charge of teaching the three-day course which is offered on a quarterly basis and has been offered for 15 years. It focuses heavily on U.S. and international regulatory requirements as listed above. Among the retired Coast Guard officers in charge include lead instructor St. Pierre and retired commander Edmond Morris.

Port Manatee’s course is known as the only approved facility officer training program by a U.S. seaport, now boasting an advanced and new level of certification and recognition. Port Manatee takes pride in being the closest deepwater seaport to the Panama Canal and boasts a $2.5 billion economic impact. More than 24,000 jobs overall are supported as well.

The Bucyrus Co.: Digging the Panama Canal


A fascinating look at the role that a major American manufacturer, the Bucyrus Co., played in the construction of the Panama Canal. In 1904, the Ohio-based firm, now a subsidiary of Caterpillar, supplied 77 of the 102 giant steam shovels used to dig the 48-mile long ship canal that revolutionized global trade.


Port Manatee to Develop New Intermodal Hub

Palmetto, FL – Port Manatee is developing an international intermodal trade hub to assist companies from throughout the world in advancing production, distribution and other business activities, including innovative global supply chain solutions.

“As the closest US deep-water seaport to the expanding Panama Canal, Port Manatee is drawing increased interest,” said Carlos Buqueras, Port Manatee’s executive director.

The new hub, he said, “will provide locally and internationally headquartered companies alike with a landing platform for capitalizing upon Port Manatee’s unique position in the global marketplace.”

Companies from across Europe, Latin America, the Caribbean and Asia are expected to be among those companies with operations in the new Port Manatee Intermodal Center.

Firms currently engaged in – or seeking to take part in – trade with Cuba are to be a “particular focus,” said Buqueras, adding that both outbound and inbound overseas trade mission programs are being organized “to further boost the effectiveness” of the new hub.

“The international trade hub will be good for global commerce and good for Port Manatee, while enhancing economic benefits to Manatee County,” Buqueras said.

Port Manatee is a multipurpose deepwater seaport at the entrance to Tampa Bay, Florida, that serves bulk, breakbulk, container, heavy-lift, project and general cargo customers.