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Nearly 15,000 containers are trapped in the terminal, American truck drivers call for demurrage exemption

Since this summer, the US integrated ports Los Angeles and Long Beach have been plagued by congestion, and the situation is getting worse.

The California Trucking Association (CTA) and the Port Trucking Association (HTA) said this week that the transportation of goods through these two ports is "nearly completely paralyzed."

According to HTA, 10,000-15,000 containers were trapped on the terminal, hindering operations.

And a series of factors have exacerbated congestion and backlog: one is the decline in terminal productivity due to Covid-19 workers reduction; the other is the shortage of chassis vehicles; the third is the "lack of two-way transactions" called by the trucking organization-truck drivers cannot do it at once Take away the imported boxes while delivering.

This congestion has now spread to rail transport companies and has increased the turnaround time of terminal trucks. The average turnaround time has increased from 70 minutes in August to 77 minutes in September and 81 minutes in October.

The two trucking associations are now urging terminal operators and shipping companies to suspend the collection of demurrage fees.

They argued: "The freight forwarders and truck drivers are unable to return the empty containers or pick up the goods, and are being deducted millions of dollars in extra late fees and demurrage fees. We hope that fair action can be taken immediately to stop the late fees and demurrage fees."

They pointed out that earlier this year, tow truck drivers affected the return of empty containers due to gate closure and reservation system problems. At that time, two carriers agreed to waive demurrage charges, but the problem persisted and millions of dollars were collected. Demurrage.

The charges may continue for some time. The National Retail Federation (NRF) predicts that imports will gradually decrease in the next few months, but other organizations predict that imports will remain high until the Spring Festival in February.

CTA and HTA stated that if progress cannot be seen soon, they will take further action and intend to call on the US Federal Maritime Commission to intervene.

Since the beginning of this year, imports from all US West Coast ports have surged. According to the latest data from the National Retail Federation (NRF), imported goods in September were 2.11 million TEUs, which is the highest level since the organization began its Port Tracker survey in 2002.

In October, the monthly cargo volume of the Port of Long Beach and the Port of Los Angeles, the busiest ports in the United States, reached a record high. The port of Long Beach's cargo volume in September was 795,580 TEU, an increase of 12.5% over the previous year, while the cargo volume of Los Angeles was 883,625 TEU, an increase of 13.3% over September 2019.

NRF vice president of supply chain and customs policy Jonathan Gold (Jonathan Gold) said: “This surge is partly due to the replenishment of inventories after the retail rebound this summer, and partly because if panic buying occurs again, no There will be shortages."