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Frame The Importance of

Commercial Truck Insurance in Brunswick, GA

  • Let's face it - truckers in America have always been the backbone of our great country. They still are in modern times. On any given day, thousands of trucks traverse our highways and local roads, delivering goods and products on time so that businesses and consumers have what they need to live life. And while commercial trucking can be an incredibly lucrative way to make a living and put food on the table, it can also be risky and expensive.
  • Whether you're the owner of a fleet, an independent trucker, or have a business that uses big rigs to transport goods, you need commercial trucking insurance to protect you and your client's investments, shield you from liability, and more.
  • That's where working with a reliable truck insurance agency comes into play. Unfortunately, for many commercial truck insurance providers, serving the needs of truckers is low on the proverbial totem pole. At Independence Insurance Agency, nothing could be further from the truth.

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Insurance Agency in Brunswick, GA You Can Trust

Much like you pride yourself on running a successful trucking business, Independence Insurance Agency prides itself on its years of experience providing truck insurance for hardworking men and women across the country. And in our experience, insurance rates for truckers are just too high - so high, in fact, that they eat away at their bottom line, making it more difficult to run a business and make a profit. Fortunately, at Independence Insurance Agency, we provide truckers the freedom they need from astronomically high insurance rates so they can stay on the road and keep driving America forward.

As one of the most trusted commercial trucking insurance agencies in the U.S., we understand the challenges that you face daily as a trucker. We also know how important it is to protect your business. That's why we go above and beyond to find you the best-priced coverage available, whether you're an operator, own a small fleet, a large fleet, or something in between.

Commercial Truck Insurance Brunswick, GA

We Put Truckers First Because Others Don't

 Truck Insurance Brunswick, GA

Truckers across the country choose to work with Independence Insurance Agency because we put their needs first before anything else. As experts in transportation insurance, we proudly offer a range of quality insurance products that are both practical and affordable for them. Our industry-leading carriers provide coverage that caters to the unique challenges faced by the trucking industry, ensuring that your business is protected at all times.

At our core, we are committed to finding the best possible price for your coverage without compromising the quality of service you deserve. The truth is, we understand how essential truckers are to the United States and take pride in making their insurance experience more streamlined and affordable.

One way we do so is by simplifying the insurance process. Our transportation specialists take the time to understand your specific needs and budget to tailor a comprehensive plan that works for you. You won't ever have to worry about cookie-cutter plans or uninterested agents when you work with our commercial trucking insurance agency. We take an educational approach to ensure that the entire big rig insurance process is quick, painless, and easy to understand. If there's something you don't understand, we're happy to take the time to explain. After all, the success and safety of your business are on the line.

Looking to the future, we are committed to providing innovative new products that cater to the ever-changing needs of truck drivers. As your one-stop shop for commercial trucking insurance, we are dedicated to your success, one policy at a time.

If you're a commercial trucker looking to ensure your rig, you can rest easy knowing that Independence Insurance Agency provides:

  • Affordable Trucking Insurance Plans for Any Budget
  • Exemplary Customer Service
  • Seasoned Transportation Specialists Who Customize Plans to Your Needs
  • A+ Carriers Across the Country
  • Simple, Easy Quote and Bind Process
  • Multiple Insurance Carriers Quoted to Find You the Best Rates
  • Truck Insurance for New Ventures

Call us or send us a message today to learn more about the best 18-wheeler insurance options for your trucking business.

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Common Types of Big Rig Truck Insurance in Brunswick, GA

At Independence Insurance Agency, we offer several types of insurance coverage for local, intermediate, and long-haul trucking needs. Here are just a few categories of trucking insurance coverage that our agency offers.

As the foundation of your insurance policy, liability coverage is required by law in most states in the U.S. It provides coverage for damage or injuries caused to properties or other people if your 18-wheeler is responsible for the crash. Without liability coverage, it's almost impossible to drive a truck or run a trucking business without major legal consequences.

Having physical damage coverage is an essential component that shouldn't be overlooked. This insurance is responsible for covering the expenses related to repairing or replacing your truck in situations such as accidents, theft, vandalism, and other damaging events. By having this coverage, you can rest assured that your business won't be affected significantly by unexpected incidents, and you can continue running your operations smoothly even in challenging times.

For trucking companies, the goods they transport are crucial to their operations. To protect these goods from damage, loss, or theft while in transit, cargo insurance is essential. This coverage provides much-needed peace of mind for both you and your clients, allowing you to reimburse clients for any losses sustained while protecting your reputation and brand identity.

Non-Trucking Liability Insurance is designed to cover property damage or bodily injury that may occur during personal time when the driver/truck is not under dispatch. This coverage can be applied with or without a trailer and is added to a commercial policy as an endorsement.

While Independence Insurance Agency has built a reputation of excellence in serving the needs of truckers, we also offer general liability. Also known as Truckers General Liability, this coverage insures for bodily injuries or property damage that happen due to business activities that are NOT the cause of operating a truck. It covers accidents that occur in parking lots, rest stops, also while loading or unloading. General liability can also cover losses related to theft and vandalism. Most brokers and shippers will require this coverage to work with you.

Bobtail insurance is a type of coverage that is comparable to non-trucking liability, which is designed to offer protection when driving a truck without a trailer attached. This is commonly referred to as "bobtailing." With bobtail insurance, the tractor is covered at all times, even when it is not attached to a trailer, regardless of whether or not the truck is under dispatch.

Trailer interchange insurance is a must-have if you're involved in a trailer interchange agreement. This essential coverage offers protection for trailers owned by other parties that you're using under a contractual agreement. It covers damages caused by collisions, fire, theft, and vandalism, providing assurance to all parties involved.

Curious whether our commercial truck insurance agency in cityname, state offers additional coverage? The following options can be bound in your insurance policy:

  • Business Interruption Insurance
  • Reefer Breakdown Insurance
  • Occupational Accident with Contract Liability Insurance
  • Rental Reimbursement Insurance
  • Underinsured or Uninsured Motorist Insurance
  • Towing Insurance
  • Electronics Insurance
  • Much More

Three plus 3 Safe Driving Tips to

Lower the Cost of Truck Insurance in Brunswick, GA

Keeping your drivers safe on the road is crucial not only for their own well-being but also for the safety of other motorists and the financial stability of your business. The Department of Labor has identified the trucking industry as one of the most hazardous sectors in the U.S. In fact, trucking and logistics fleets are known for their high injury and fatality rates. By improving how safely your truckers drive, you can help reduce expenses related to claim payouts, accidents, and insurance premium hikes.

Whether you own a large fleet or you're the owner and operator of a single rig, keep these safe driving tips in mind to help lower your insurance costs.

Implement Preventative Maintenance Plans

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

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 Trucking Insurance Brunswick, GA

Practice Defensive Driving

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
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 Commercial Liability Insurance For Truckers Brunswick, GA

Find Ways to Prevent Distracted Driving

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

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 Commercial Truck Insurance Quote Brunswick, GA

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

 Low Priced Commercial Truck Insurance Brunswick, GA phone Call Now

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
Commercial Truck Insurance Brunswick, GA phone Call Now

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

 Truck Insurance Brunswick, GA phone Call Now

check light FAQs About

Independence Insurance Agency

If you're looking for a commercial trucking insurance agency for your business, chances are you have some questions - and we've got answers. Keep reading to learn more about some of the most commonly asked questions we hear from truckers like you.

Why go with a "jack of all trades" when you can work with specialists who focus exclusively on transportation insurance? We have excellent relationships with major trucking insurance carriers and, as such, can provide the best assistance and reasonable rates.

Typically, companies will look at claims that date back three years or less.

We proudly work with more than 20 carriers to provide our clients with the most advantageous options at competitive prices, catering to the needs of owner-operators and big fleets alike.

Permit filings are typically done by insurance companies on the next business day. Federal (FMCSA) filings are completed online and updated immediately, while some states may take up to three weeks to process.

Independence Insurance Agency: Committed to the Trucking Industry

There's no question about it - you've got to protect your staff, your rig, and your trucking business with insurance. But choosing the right insurance partner isn't always easy. Thankfully, with Independence Insurance Agency by your side, you can rest easy knowing you're covered no matter where the road takes you. If you're in need of a commercial truck insurance agency in Brunswick, GA that caters to truckers like you, pick up the phone and contact one of our transportation specialists today. That way, you can get back on the road with confidence tomorrow.

 Trucking Insurance Brunswick, GA

Latest News in Brunswick, GA

‘Exhausted every lead’: Family suspends active search for missing Georgia fishermen, still hold onto hope

BRUNSWICK, Ga. – The families of the three missing Georgia fishermen announced on Tuesday they would suspend their active search after exhausting every lead they had.The three missing men — Tyler Barlow, Caleb Wilkinson and Dalton Conway — left Brunswick, Georgia on Oct. 14 for a fishing trip and were scheduled...

BRUNSWICK, Ga. – The families of the three missing Georgia fishermen announced on Tuesday they would suspend their active search after exhausting every lead they had.

The three missing men — Tyler Barlow, Caleb Wilkinson and Dalton Conway — left Brunswick, Georgia on Oct. 14 for a fishing trip and were scheduled to return on Oct. 18, but they disappeared.

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'I'm going to fight': Families of 3 missing boaters continue search in hopes of finding their sons

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'I'm going to fight': Families of 3 missing boaters continue search in hopes of finding their sons

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After weeks of active search, the Coast Guard suspended their efforts on Oct. 26. But the families of the three missing men kept the search going with the help of private crews and volunteers.

RELATED | ‘We are not gonna stop looking for these boys ever’: Family search for missing Georgia fishermen continues Tuesday

Debris from the boat of three missing Georgia fishermen was found 16 miles off the coast of St. Augustine on Nov. 19, according to the United Cajun Navy. On Nov. 20, the United Cajun Navy posted a photo of a possible empty life raft seen in the water.

This discovery reignited the efforts to search for the missing boaters. However, Tyler’s dad, Chris, said none of the boat wrecks and debris found have been linked to the Carol Ann boat.

“All family members and I do hold onto hope that we will be presented with a miracle as we have put this in God’s hands now and pray that he returns Tyler, Caleb and Dalton home to us safely,” Chris wrote in a Facebook post.

MORE | Families, supporters light up St. Marys as search continues for 3 missing Brunswick fishermen

Chris said the last helicopter searching for the three men landed at 4:38 p.m. Tuesday, and it will be their last flight unless they receive new information.

As they suspend the search, Chris asks the community to keep a lookout while boating or visiting beaches — hoping it may help them “put the remaining pieces of this horrific puzzle together.”

Chris also said the families will be pushing for legislative changes to prevent this from happening to anyone in the future.

Families announce they’ve ended the search for missing Georgia boaters

BRUNSWICK, Ga. — The families of three missing Georgia boaters have announced they are suspending the search for them after 45 days.Caleb Wilkinson, Dalton Conway and Tyler Barlow were reported missing of the coast of Brunswick on Oct. 21 after the owner of the boat they were fishing in, the Carol Ann, failed to return on time.[DOWNLOAD: Free WSB-TV News app for alerts as news breaks]The Coast Guard search for the men...

BRUNSWICK, Ga. — The families of three missing Georgia boaters have announced they are suspending the search for them after 45 days.

Caleb Wilkinson, Dalton Conway and Tyler Barlow were reported missing of the coast of Brunswick on Oct. 21 after the owner of the boat they were fishing in, the Carol Ann, failed to return on time.

[DOWNLOAD: Free WSB-TV News app for alerts as news breaks]

The Coast Guard search for the men was called off on Oct. 26, but the families were able to raise enough money for several private groups to continue the search.

Last week, the fish bin from the boat was found off the coast of St. Augustine. Search and rescue groups flew helicopters in the area but weren’t able to find any other evidence of the boat.

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On Tuesday, the families announced that the last helicopter searching for the men landed at 4:38 p.m. and that they are discontinuing the search until they get new information.

“We are suspending our active search effort as we have exhausted every lead we currently have,” Barlow’s father, Chris Barlow, wrote “Although we have found numerous boat wrecks and debris none have been linked to the Carol Ann.”

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Barlow said he and family members are holding onto hope that they will be “presented with a miracle.”

“We do ask everyone, as they resume their normal daily lives, to keep a lookout when they are visiting beaches or boating for anything that may help us put the remaining pieces of this horrific puzzle together,” Barlow wrote.

Barlow said he never imagined that the last time he saw his son would be the last time.

“Instead of handing him my personal locator beacon and telling him to be safe I would have begged him not to go,” Barlow wrote.

Barlow wrote that having to lead the search efforts as parents was the hardest thing he’d ever had to do, and that the families will lobby for legislative changes that would change how search and rescues are conducted in the future.

Last month, Stevie Conway, who is Caleb Wilkinson’s girlfriend and Dalton Conway’s sister, announced that she is pregnant with the couple’s first child.

Caleb Wilkinson you will forever be my number one love and the other piece of my soul I’ve always been missing,” Conway wrote on Facebook. I’m so blessed and thankful to be carrying our sweet baby as an extension of you. I hope with every bone in my body that you’ll be home soon to be the best dad and partner.”

Families suspend search for three missing Brunswick boaters

Dalton Conway, Caleb Wilkinson and Tyler Barlow left the Mary Ross Waterfront Park in Brunswick on Saturday, Oct. 14 and never returned on Oct. 18 as scheduled.BRUNSWICK, Ga. — The families of the three missing Brunswick boaters suspended the search for the men Tuesday after the three went missing on a fishing trip 80 miles off the coast of Brunswick in mid-October, according to a ...

Dalton Conway, Caleb Wilkinson and Tyler Barlow left the Mary Ross Waterfront Park in Brunswick on Saturday, Oct. 14 and never returned on Oct. 18 as scheduled.

BRUNSWICK, Ga. — The families of the three missing Brunswick boaters suspended the search for the men Tuesday after the three went missing on a fishing trip 80 miles off the coast of Brunswick in mid-October, according to a Facebook post.

Dalton Conway, Caleb Wilkinson and Tyler Barlow left the Mary Ross Waterfront Park in Brunswick on Saturday, Oct. 14. The men left for the fishing trip aboard a 31-foot boat named the 'Carol Ann' and were supposed to return from the trip on Oct. 18, but never did.

"We are suspending our active search effort as we have exhausted every lead we currently have, although we have found numerous boat wrecks and debris none have been linked to the Carol Ann," the post reads in part.

The Coast Guard suspended their search for the boaters on Oct. 26 after they searched 90,000 miles from Massachusetts to Florida. However, the families of the three men missing and hundreds of volunteers, worked tirelessly and continued the search on the ground, in the sea and in the air. The 'Carol Ann Buoy Spotters' Facebook page was created for anyone to post photos from buoy cameras along the East Coast that could give clues to the boaters' whereabouts.

On Nov. 19, a fishing bin from the boat was discovered about 16 miles off the shore of St. Augustine. A Coast Guard vessel searched the area that day after the fish bin was found but did not find anything conclusive.

Additionally, a new photo emerged on Nov. 20 on Facebook, showing a pink mass in the Atlantic Ocean which drew several volunteers to the shores of Crescent Beach, sparking renewed hope. The Cajun Navy, a volunteer group which assists in search-and-rescue efforts, took the photo.

Credit: Family

The photo was taken somewhere between Matanzas Inlet and Ocean Side South to Flagler Beach.

The families of the boaters called the photo a "possible life raft." The Coast Guard was notified of the photo and spoke to the pilot who took it. On Nov. 21, the Coast Guard told First Coast News the object seen in the photo could not be bigger than a life vest. The object was ultimately not confirmed to have a connection to the Carol Ann.

The families' full Facebook post can be read below:

"It is with great sadness that we are informing everyone that the helicopter that landed at 4:38 P.M. today will be our last flight unless we receive new information. We are suspending our active search effort as we have exhausted every lead we currently have, although we have found numerous boat wrecks and debris none have been linked to the Carol Ann

It has now been 45 days since the boys left the dock in Brunswick, Georgia. All family members and I do hold onto hope that we will be presented with a miracle as we have put this in God’s hands now and pray that he returns Tyler, Caleb and Dalton home to us safely. We do ask everyone, as they resume their normal daily lives, to keep a lookout when they are visiting beaches or boating for anything that may help us put the remaining pieces of this horrific puzzle together.

We would like to thank all the amazing and unwavering volunteers, those who prayed continuously for us and the boys, for the donations, and all those who have supplied us with planes and helicopters to make our search possible. We know this was a long and exhausting search and all of you have been on the proverbial roller coaster ride with us and supported us as if we were your own family. We will never be able to express how grateful we truly are. If there is ever any way, we can possibly repay any of you, we will be there for you.

We are all so very proud of our boys, they united our community and beyond and have shown us what it truly means to love others.

The last time I saw Tyler I never imagined that it could possibly be the last time I would see him, instead of handing him my personal locator beacon and telling him to be safe I would have begged him not to go. Leading the search for Tyler, Dalton and Caleb has been the hardest thing we have ever done in our lives and something no parent should ever have to do. In the coming months we will continue our motto #wontstop by pushing for legislative changes that need to be made to decrease the chances of this happening to anyone in the future. #Carolann #daltonconway #tylerbarlow #calebwilkinson #bringourboyshome"

**Editors note: The below video forecast is from Tuesday, Nov. 21.**

Study shows high exposure to PCBs in Brunswick - The Current

Correction: Aroclor 1268, a chemical of local concern in the Brunswick area, was used at what is now the LCP Chemicals Superfund site. It was not manufactured there. A previous version of this article misstated the chemical’s connection to the site. Glynn County Commissioner Allen Booker grew up in public housing just a block away from the Pinova/Hercules chemical plant in Brunswick, he told community members who gathered Tuesday to hear preliminary results of a study of chemical exposure in the area, which is home to f...

Correction: Aroclor 1268, a chemical of local concern in the Brunswick area, was used at what is now the LCP Chemicals Superfund site. It was not manufactured there. A previous version of this article misstated the chemical’s connection to the site.

Glynn County Commissioner Allen Booker grew up in public housing just a block away from the Pinova/Hercules chemical plant in Brunswick, he told community members who gathered Tuesday to hear preliminary results of a study of chemical exposure in the area, which is home to four Superfund sites.

“This was not something far off for me. This was personal, like it is for many of you,” he said. “And I participated in the study. And so it was an eye opener.”

The study results showed that blood levels of several chemicals known to have polluted the local environment were higher in study participants than in the average American. Among them were certain polychlorinated biphenyls or PCBs, and components of the pesticide toxaphene. Both sets of chemicals were produced at nearby factories and the production of both was banned decades ago.

Noah Scovronick, assistant professor in the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University and a co-leader of the study said one question from the local community was driving the work:

“What does it mean to live and to grow up and to raise their families near these sites? Are they affecting people’s exposure to hazardous chemicals?”

The average age of the 100 participants, all adults, was 60 years. About two-thirds were women and a little less than half, 46, were Black. Importantly, they were all long-term residents, having lived there an average of 47 years.

The researchers invited the public to the meeting after first informing the participants of their individual results confidentially in writing. Some of the 150 or so people who filled the community center at Howard Coffin Park identified themselves as study participants.

Researchers analyzed the blood samples for contaminants including lead, mercury, arsenic, cadmium, and PCBs, including unique PCBs used at what is now the LCP Chemicals Superfund site, which is managed by Honeywell International Inc. They also tested pesticides that have been banned but persist in the environment, including a component of DDT and of toxaphene, which was also once produced at Hercules. Finally, they tested for PFAS, or per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, so called “forever chemicals” used in a variety of products including fire-fighting foam.

The most striking finding came in the PCBs. The study tested for seven different PCBs, including four found commonly in the U.S. population. The other three are part of a brand name chemical called Aroclor 1268, one of the pollutants of local concern used at what is now the LCP Chemicals Superfund site.

(PCBS) are man made chemicals that were used in electrical equipment like capacitors and transformers, as well as in things like hydraulic fluids, heat transfer, fluid, lubricants, and plasticizers,” Scovronick said. ” … PCBs may affect the immune, reproductive, hormone and nervous systems, and there have been links with cancer.”

Study participants had lower levels of the common PCBs — PCB 118, PCB 138, PCB 152 and PCB 180 — than the average American. But they had higher levels of PCBs that are components of the locally produced Aroclor 168. For PCB 206, which makes up the largest percentage of Aroclor 1268, the study average of 50 parts per trillion was more than twice the American average of 18 parts per trillion. Additionally, about 40% of the participants tested at very high levels, above that seen in 95 percent of the U.S. population.

Average toxaphene levels were also higher in study participants than in the average Canadian, but not dramatically higher. However, about a quarter of the study participants did have very high levels, above that seen in 95 percent of the Canadians studied. Scovronick cautioned toxaphene exposure is not well studied, making the results more difficult to interpret. The comparison to Canadian averages was necessary because the only available study on toxaphene levels was done in Canada.

Study participants had about the same blood levels of two of three metals tested — lead, and mercury — as the average American. Cadmium levels were a little higher in the study participants, but some participants smoked cigarettes, a known source of cadium exposure, so “it’s not something that at this point has set off alarm bells for us,” Scovronick said.

The researchers also tested 25 samples for PFAS, adding this test after realizing that a study done of Sapelo Islanders showed high levels of PFAS and also because local fires have been put out with firefighting foam, which contains the chemical. Because each test requires a certain volume of blood, only 25 of the participants had enough of a sample remaining to complete this test. Levels were about the same as in the average American, though two samples tested very high.

Booker, the executive director of Rebuilding Together of Glynn County, helped get the ball rolling on the study by partnering with other community groups to hear residents’ concerns about living in a county with a long legacy of industrial pollution.

Along with the four Superfund sites, the county also has 16 other toxic waste sites, Booker said.

Like Booker, other residents have seen family members die from cancer and pulmonary diseases and wondered if chemical contamination was the cause and if they were at risk, too.

The study, funded through a pilot grant from Emory University’s NIH-supported Exposome Research Center, has not yet been peer reviewed, though the researchers expect to go through that process over the next 12-18 months. Scovronick also listed a number of study caveats at the outset of the public meeting.

The study cannot answer when or how an exposure occurred, or what exactly the exposure means for a person’s health, Scovronick explained.

“So even if somebody tests high for a particular chemical, we can’t tell you whether it was because you ate seafood, or whether it was because you worked at one of these sites or whether there was some other way you may have been exposed,” he said. “And the other thing is that we did not collect information on health impacts on any diseases that people may be experiencing. The study is not about whether the exposures are actually causing health problems.”

Next steps include Emory University doctors organizing webinars for healthcare providers in Brunswick. Attendees can learn about how they should be thinking about their patients who may be exposed to some of these chemicals.

The nonprofit Coastal Community Health is already well versed in these issues and has opened a clinic in downtown Brunswick, convenient for many of those who partipated in the study, said CEO Dr. Kavanaugh Chandler, who emphasized the importance of affordable healthcare.

“Let’s just say hypothetically you were exposed,” he said. “Your lifespan could be extended if you just got basic care.”

Along with Coastal Community Health and Rebuilding Together of Glynn County, other community groups involved in the study include the Environmental Justice Advisory Board, One Hundred Miles, Glynn Environmental Coalition, UGA Marine Extension, Coastal Equity and Resilience Hub and the Community First Planning Commission.

Community groups are already working to reduce exposures to pollutants through education, including seafood advisories which note the types and locations of Glynn County fish and shellfish most likely to be contaminated as well as how much is safe to eat.

The Emory researchers intend to expand the study and are preparing to seek funding.

“If we did a complete study on 500 people that looked at these and other exposures and included health outcomes, and in depth questionnaires it would cost in the ballpark of a $1 million or more,” Scovronick said.

That’s exactly what study participants like Anita Collins want to see.

“I participated in this because it needs to be done and there needs to be more where you have a larger number of people, because so many of us we grew up right there by Hercules,” she said.

Coast Guard suspends search for 3 fishermen missing off the coast of Georgia

BRUNSWICK, Ga. - The U.S. Coast Guard announced on Thursday that it is suspending its search for the 3 commercial fisherman who disappeared off the coast of Georgia near Brunswick.Before suspending the search, crews searched more than 94,000 square miles, an area larger in size than the states of Georgia and South Carolina combined."Despite the unwavering dedication of our crews, regrettably, we have not been able to uncover any traces of the vessel and have made the difficult decision to suspend the searc...

BRUNSWICK, Ga. - The U.S. Coast Guard announced on Thursday that it is suspending its search for the 3 commercial fisherman who disappeared off the coast of Georgia near Brunswick.

Before suspending the search, crews searched more than 94,000 square miles, an area larger in size than the states of Georgia and South Carolina combined.

"Despite the unwavering dedication of our crews, regrettably, we have not been able to uncover any traces of the vessel and have made the difficult decision to suspend the search for three beloved family members," said Capt. Frank DelRosso, commander, Coast Guard Sector Charleston. "We extend our heartfelt gratitude to our partner agencies and the countless volunteers who have lent their assistance in this arduous search. Undoubtedly, they, like us, share in the deep sympathy we hold for the families of the missing individuals."

Involved in the search were:

MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crews from Air Station Elizabeth CityHC-130 Hercules aircraft crews from Air Station Elizabeth CityHC-130 Hercules aircraft crews from Air Station ClearwaterMH-65 Dolphin helicopter crews from Air Station SavannahHC-144 Ocean Sentry aircraft crews from Air Station Miami45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew from Station BrunswickThe crew of the Coast Guard Cutter IbisThe crew of the Coast Guard Cutter TarponCoast Guard Auxiliary aircraft crewsGeorgia Department of Natural ResourcesU.S. Customs and Border Protection P-3U.S. Navy E-2C Hawkeye aircraft crewSector Charleston watchstandersSeventh District watchstandersUSCG Search and Rescue Council

ORIGINAL STORY

Three commercial fishermen are missing, 10 days after their boat headed to sea off Georgia, prompting a search by the U.S. Coast Guard over thousands of square miles of ocean.

Crews were still scouring the waters with boats and planes for the 31-foot (9.45 meter) fishing vessel Carol Ann after searching more than 32,000 square miles (82,880 square kilometers) over several days, the Coast Guard said Tuesday in a post on X, formerly Twitter.

The boat's captain, Dalton Conway, departed the port city of Brunswick on Oct. 14 along with two crew members, Caleb Wilkinson and Tyler Barlow. The Coast Guard launched its search efforts Friday after the boat's owner reported the fishermen hadn't returned on schedule.

Barlow's parents, Kim Jones and Chris Barlow, said they're still hopeful all three men will be found safe.

"We just need to keep the search going," Jones told the Savannah Morning News. "We don't want this search to end, because we do firmly believe that God has got them and they're just out there floating and drifting."

Conway's sister, Stevie Conway, said her younger brother is an experienced boat captain who's made hundreds of trips to catch fish for local merchants and restaurants.

"My brother goes anytime the weather is good," Stevie Conway told The Brunswick News. "This is his career. He does this for a living."

The three men's families became concerned when they didn't return home as scheduled last Wednesday. Stevie Conway said people on another boat reported seeing the Carol Ann on the water Thursday, but otherwise no one has heard from the fishermen since they departed.

"We're really stressing at this point," she said. "They should have been back by now. We're concerned. These mothers love their babies, and we want them to come home."

Coast Guard Lt. Cmdr. Jason Erickson of Coast Guard Sector Charleston it's possible the boat became disabled and drifted into the Gulf Stream, which may have swept the vessel far from its planned fishing spot some 80 miles (130 kilometers) offshore.

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