The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) is responsible for maintaining and improving nearly 12,000 miles of shallow-draft (9'-14') inland and intracoastal waterways, 13,000 miles of deep-draft (14' and greater) coastal channels, and 400 ports, harbors, and turning basins throughout the United States. Because these components of the national waterway network are considered assets to both US commerce and national security, they must be carefully managed to keep marine traffic operating safely and efficiently.
Yet only a few of them are naturally deep. In most of them, channels must first be excavated to a Congressionally mandated depth and then dredged periodically, so they will remain clear and safe for navigation. Without dredging, many waterways, ports, and harbors would become impassable to commercial and recreational vessels.
A typical dredging project goes through several phases, and data is collected during each: Project planning, advertising, bidding, contract award, contractor, dredge equipment, dredging, placement, inspection, timekeeping, project completion, and payment. This website provides access to USACE dredging resources that can be used to record data, monitor dredging activities, and answer critical dredging-related questions.