COVID-19 protocols for the Port of Bristol Bay and processor docks

Jun 16, 2020

The comings and goings of fishermen and boats in the Bristol Bay Borough will be severely restricted this summer to mitigate the possible spread of COVID-19.

 

A processor in Naknek. July 10, 2019.
Credit Sage Smiley/KDLG

 

The Port of Bristol Bay is closed to the public this summer. There is a new security checkpoint at the port's road enterance, and anyone trying to access the port has to declare their business before being allowed inside.

 

Some port amenities like the office, fish grinder, and ice machine are still operating, but people using those services has to stay in their vehicles and will be helped one at a time by port staff. There is no pedestrian access to the port.

 

Commercial fishing boat launches are still allowed at the port, although launch procedures are more tightly regulated than in previous years. Fishermen are required to board their vessel before the security checkpoint and stay on their boat through the whole launch process. 

 

Boats are allowed to tie up on the downriver “Fisherman’s Dock” side of the port, but are not allowed to leave their boats to access port facilities. 

 

Bristol Bay Borough authorities have not responded to KDLG's repeated requests for information about restrictions at the docks in King Salmon or South Naknek.

 

Access to processor launches, docks, & facilities varies from processor to processor, but all of the processor campuses in the Bristol Bay Borough are closed to the public. Processors have submitted public safety plans which are posted on the borough website. Not all of the plans lay out specific fleet rules for docks and facilities. 

 

Those plans that specify fleet restrictions for the most part either totally ban fleet from processor property, or severely restrict fleet access to processor buildings and amenities.

 

The Naknek Marine Center also posted their COVID-19 protocols on Facebook. This includes social distancing measures, restricted access to facilities like bathrooms and offices, and a recommendation to get on the water as quickly as possible and stay there. 

 

If you have information about processor or Bristol Bay Borough Covid-19 mitigation procedures, you can contact KDLG at news@kdlg.org or 907-842-2200.

 

Contact the author at sage@kdlg.org