Things haven’t been looking pretty for the Long Beach/Los Angeles ocean ports over the last several months. Increased ecommerce activity, consumer demand, and peak season have all contributed to record-breaking numbers of imports. And Long Beach/LA being amongst the most popular U.S ports have been hit hard with the increased activity.
In a recent post we talked about the empty container crisis. There is a container availability issue overseas in Asia as businesses are pushing to stock up inventory before the December holidays, but unfortunately the crises is caused in part by the pileup of empty containers on the wrong side of the supply chain – LA/Long Beach.
Increased Congestion at LA/Long Beach
Los Angeles and Long Beach are experiencing unprecedented amounts of congestion amidst the increased demand, and there simply isn’t enough labor force to keep all containers moving seamlessly along their supply chain. As a result, empty containers are piling up at the ports, indicating horrible congestion expected to continue through the coming months.
Total Terminals International: Increasing Cargo Pickup Time Frames
As a relief effort for the congestion, Long Beach is beginning a trial of extending their operational hours to help ease up the congestion. This effort is being initiated by Total Terminals International – the launch partner for the project.
The project is encouraging shuttle drivers to pickup cargo between 11:00pm-1:30am, and early in the morning between 3:00am-7:00am before sunrise to help with decongesting the ports’ cargo. In addition to the expanded hours, drivers will be able to show up at any time rather than being constricted to a specific appointment time – a rule that’s caused issues due to major delays and congestion.
The efforts being taken by Total Terminals International (TTI) are being done as a trial run to get closer towards 24/7 operations. The port of Los Angeles is experimenting with opening their gates over the weekend to help aid congestion.
These congestion relief efforts aim to restore a reasonable balance to what the port should handle on a daily basis. Currently, the expected dwell time for containers unloaded at the ports of Long Beach and LA is six days, and there are more than 70 container vessels awaiting docking off-short of the ports.
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