Manson wins WEDA safety excellence award

Manson Construction Co. of Seattle, Washington, has been selected by the Western Dredging Association (WEDA) as the recipient of the 2020 Safety Excellence Award for the Atchafalaya River maintenance dredging project.


Manson won the Atchafalaya project in September 2018. After the scope changed from a 4-month, $16 million project to a 9-month $30 million project due to record-breaking shoaling events, the job was successfully concluded in January 2020 with ZERO recordable injuries!

The work required hydraulic dredging of approx. 10 million cubic yards of material within the Atchafalaya River Bay and Bar Channel In three primary reaches: Crewboat Cut, the Bay Reach, and the Bar Reach.

According to WEDA, the project overcame three major chalanges:

  1. Remote location: Manson outfitted a derrick with temporary living quarters to accommodate the crew for the duration of the project which reached as far as 35 miles from the nearest infrastructure.
  2. Record high water: The Mississippi River (which channels Into the Atchafalaya) was at or above flood level for a record 135 days in 2019, putting the project team in higher, faster, debris-filled water for more than 5 months. The high water shut down many facilities including fueling docks and left existing crew landings several feet underwater.
  3. Hurricane Barry: The storm made landfall in Southern LA on July 13, 2019, with the eye of the storm tracking over the heart of the project. All equipment was moved 15 miles inland and rafted together to ride out the storm. Coordination with the US. Coast Guard and the Army Corps was integral to safely weathering the storm.

Manson concluded that they are proud of the team who worked on this challenging dredging project, both for their hard work and their attention to safety.