U.S. harbor truckers say West Coast port congestion is worsening - report
Gauging whether the logjams at the U.S.’s busiest gateway for trade are improving or not depends who you ask, Bloomberg reports.
Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka on Friday said the number of aging containers sitting on the docks awaiting collection had dropped 60% since the port announced it plans to charge ocean carriers penalties on Oct. 25.
Speak to the Harbor Trucking Association CEO Matt Schrap, and the picture looks different — empty boxes are now clogging up space elsewhere, including on chassis that are hooked onto trucks.
“For us, it’s gotten a little more strained, to be honest,” Schrap was quoted as saying. “Right now, we’re literally storing thousands of empty containers, thousands of chassis that we can’t use to move these imports.”
There are more than 115,000 empty containers in the Los Angeles port waiting to return to their point of origin and that’s “on top of another over 10,000 containers that are out in the wild, so to speak, across the Southwest United States, in our truck yards on the streets, grounded, sitting on chassis all over the place,” he said.
The issue is restrictions on empty-container returns, Schrap said. Trucks need a chassis to collect import-laden containers, but unless they bring an empty container to free up the chassis, they’re unable to move the import, he said. Los Angeles is also not operating fully around the clock, further undermining efforts.
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