Marine Transportation Services completes 2023 community resupply season

News Releases

Hay River — October 11, 2023

Marine Transportation Services (MTS) has completed its 2023 resupply season with deliveries of essential cargo and fuel to 11 Northern communities.

This was MTS’s seventh sailing season since the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) purchased marine assets from a previous operator in 2016 and formed MTS as a division under the Department of Infrastructure. This annual scheduled service provides cost-effective resupply to residents and businesses in communities on Great Slave Lake, Mackenzie River corridor and the Arctic Coast.

A total of 22.7 million litres of fuel and 3,442 tons of cargo were delivered to the following communities this season:

  • Aklavik
  • Inuvik
  • Kasho Got’ine (Fort Good Hope)
  • Łutselk’e
  • Norman Wells
  • Tuktoyaktuk
  • Tulita
  • Paulatuk
  • Sachs Harbour
  • Ulukhaktok
  • Kugluktuk

Extremely low water levels on the Mackenzie River and two evacuations of Hay River – where MTS’s main terminal is located – made for a challenging season. The low water levels resulted in MTS having to adjust its 2023 sailing schedule and transportation plans in July and cancel its third and final resupply trip to Norman Wells and Tulita.

Priority grocery items will be flown into Norman Wells and Tulita. MTS has provided its customers in Norman Wells and Tulita who had cargo booked on the cancelled resupply trip the following options at no additional cost:

  • Pick up their cargo at the Hay River terminal and receive a full refund.
  • Leave their cargo at the Hay River terminal and have it trucked to them by MTS on the winter road.
  • Leave their cargo at the Hay River terminal for delivery by barge in 2024.


“Marine Transportation Services staff work hard to ensure that residents and businesses who rely on its services for freight and fuel get these supplies in a cost-effective manner and without delay. It has been a challenging season and I thank the affected communities and customers for their patience.  MTS continues to improve its capacity to operate a reliable and professional marine shipping service in a challenging Arctic environment, and staff remain committed to providing the best possible service to all our customers.”

- Diane Archie, Minister of Infrastructure

Quick facts

  • The first resupply shipments of the season left Hay River on June 27, towing six barges of fuel and cargo.
  • The head office, main terminal and shipyard for MTS is located in Hay River. It also has freight handling terminals in Inuvik and Tuktoyaktuk.

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For media requests, please contact:

Public Affairs and Communications

Department of Infrastructure

Government of the Northwest Territories