West Coast Situation – Update 1
January 15, 2019
Dear Valued Customer,
As we continued to dig out from the unprecedented volumes discharged in US ports during the course of time prior to the Lunar New Year, we are experiencing heavy congestion, especially in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.
Because of the congestion and extra vessels calling LAX/LGB, there have been overall labor shortages. The Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) has implemented work gang allocations. Vessels are waiting 2-3 shifts after arrival prior to receiving labor and what is allocated is based on ship size. This delays cargo availability, extends the vessels at berth and causes bunching of vessels as they are delayed leaving the area.
The chassis pool of pools (PoP) has increased to 68,000 but chassis supply remains constrained due to the amount of imports and importers keeping containers and chassis in their yards longer than average.
Import Container Dwell Times
As noted, importers are holding containers longer than average. Average on the street dwell time has increased to 7 days. This is an increase of 3 days over normal periods.
As terminals are trying to cope with these import flows having issues evacuating containers due to chassis issues, their congestion issues worsen as they start to face gridlock. Terminals are maxed out space-wise and the normal flow of appointments is being interrupted as they simply have too much in certain areas of their yards to be able to work. Some terminals are refusing to accept empties from carriers they try to dig out of the volumes they have on-dock.
Given the flow of cargo and the congestion, truckers are in high demand which leads to difficulties when allocating drivers, making it difficult to get containers out of terminals.
Railcar supply is also challenged, which forces terminals to change many destinations from on-dock to off- dock. This means that containers need to be trucked out of the port, putting more pressure on trucker and chassis supply.
All these factors contribute significantly to the challenges that we are experiencing in Los Angeles and Long Beach. We are asking and encouraging all our customers to pick up their containers as soon as possible, upon availability and return the chassis and empty container as quickly as possible. The more chassis we have in the pool to evacuate loads, enables us to begin to clear up this congestion and return to normal operating procedures.
As a reminder, for all containers that charges incurred due to containers staying in the port too long, or not being returned in a timely manner, will be for the account of the importer of record.
Source: www.cma-cgm.com CUSTOMER ADVISORY #12-011519 Update 1