LA & LB: Anchored 42 | Terminal 27
Oakland: Anchored (nil) | Terminal 9 | Coastal 1
NWSA: Anchored 10 | Terminal 6 | Drifting 5
Vessel Congestion Update
The Ports of Los Angeles-Long Beach continue to experience a high volume of arrivals with over 40 container vessels waiting for a terminal. The anchorage wait times vary from 5.5 – 7.8 days. The congestion has not decreased as peak season volume continues to reflect record imports at both ports. It has been reported that the ILWU (International Longshore and Warehouse Union) labor staffing increased from 9 shifts per week to 10-12 shifts per week since the July import surge. The Marine terminal yards are at near capacity waiting for importers to pick up their cargo. However, landside supply chain partners such as chassis providers, local drayage, and warehouse operators are maxed out and not able to increase the pickup rate of cargo from the ports.
Rumors indicate truckers do not want to work nights and weekends, as PierPass 2.0 charges the same fee day or night, and there is little incentive to pick up at night. With few truckers utilizing the 2nd shift to pick up containers, it is not cost-effective for a terminal operator to keep the gates open for the 2nd shift on the weekend. Terminal gates on weekends have remained closed during the 2nd shift, however, the ILWU continues to work to offload vessels.
The Port of Long Beach held a formal dedication on August 20, 2021, to publicize the completion of a long-term project known as Middle Harbor. This project had an estimated cost of $1.5 billion with realized infrastructure improvement which took a decade from planning to completion. The project resulted in the completion of a container terminal consisting of 300 acres with the capacity to handle 3.5 million TEUs annually. Mario Cordero, Executive Director of the Port of Long Beach announced in part: “The new terminal is one of the most environmentally advanced operations as the terminal uses electrification to reduce emissions while moving containers and docked vessels can use available electric shore power in lieu of burning fuel while the vessel is berthed.”
During the celebration, a container vessel was cruising the middle harbor channel, exclusively carrying empty containers. The chartered container vessel is being used to pick up empty containers from one container terminal to the next, within the port complex, in order to help alleviate container yard congestion. Once the vessel is fully loaded, it ferries the empties back to Asia to provide equipment to shippers to reload goods for their return to the U.S.
On August 23, 2021, 12 days after one of the busiest Ningbo-Zhoushan Container Terminals stopped operation, the supply chain across China and flow of cargo continued to be impacted. The situation has assisted some European supply chains as it has eased some of their congestion. However, it is doubtful the U.S. west coast ports will experience any relief as the supply chain congestion is forecasted to continue until 2022.
As of August 25, 2021, it was announced that the Meishan terminal at Ningbo-Zhoushan, the third-largest container terminal in China, has reopened; however, the negative effect from the reduced production over the last two weeks is anticipated to continue for weeks to come.
Please contact your Western Overseas representative with any questions.