Congestion at the ports

April 2, 2022

Ocean cargo handlers are trying to find solutions for the congestion that seems to be never ending for the U.S. container ports.


Regardless of any solution, it all comes down to time. Although the ports continue to stay congested, operations in Southern California ports have sped up quite a bit, in January there were 109 containers awaiting their arrival into Los Angeles and Long Beach. As of February, that number has dropped below 60 containers.


Ocean carriers are being threatened with imposing a fee of $100 per day for containers on the marine terminals for 9 or more days. The ports have deferred this action, as the backlogs of orders have decreased.


Another action taken by the ports and carriers is using Long Beach’s extension of its Short-Term Overflow Resource, the ports will eventually build their seventh container terminal.


The state of California has also leased out additional locations for the temporary storage of containers from the ports of Los Angeles Long Beach, and Oakland. Congestion in Southern California is nothing out of the ordinary, for many years they have tried to fix this problem. In 2005, they created a program called PierPass initially this program was to help stop congestion at certain times of the day, now they are finding that it does anything but help. 


Although time isn’t being used efficiently, they also ran into the problem of not enough labor. Covid-19 has taken a toll on not only inland warehouse facilities but workforces on the docks as well.


There haven’t been enough workers to unload but overall, for congestion to decrease it will take a long-term effort that takes into account all departments involved both international and domestic.


In Bee Imagine our ocean freight department monitores containers continuously to schedule the earliest appointment and ensure the cargo is recover as soon as it’s available.