W.B. Skinner > News > Terminal Congestion and Import Service Delays

Terminal Congestion and Import Service Delays

As we are sure you are aware, many importers (and exporters!) are experiencing continued and growing supply chain challenges.  Persistent port and rail ramp congestion, container chassis shortages, excessive detention and demurrage fees from carriers, and upheaval among air cargo service providers are all contributing to this mess. As a client or associate of WB Skinner, we want to keep you informed of the current situation and provide you with the following updates. Terminal Delays Most terminals are experiencing moderate to severe congestion issues and delays. Unprecedented high volumes essentially everywhere, critical labor and equipment shortages, and reduction in yard space and downstream warehousing capacity are all contributing to this backup.
  • On the East Coast, NY/NJ vessels are averaging wait times of up to two days, while Savannah can expect delays of 2-4 days and the remainder of the East Coast Ports project delays from four to as long as 16 days.
  • West Coast vessel arrival waiting times range between 26-38 days. Imports into smaller ports such as Seattle and Oakland should expect delays from 3-15 days.
  • In the Gulf, Houston wait times are up to 10 days, and can be further compounded by weather events.
Warehouse and Storage Capacity While the log jams at West Coast ports have gotten much media attention, a glut of containers is stacking up at the ports, indicative of one of the newest struggles in our supply chain. For the year to August, imports at the port of New York and New Jersey were 26.4 per cent higher than for the same period in 2020. The warehouses where those container loads would normally head first before being distributed are struggling to meet the unprecedented demand. According to the Financial Times, warehouse operators problems are compounded as they face shortages of everything they need to run their facilities efficiently, from racks and balers to forklift trucks and staff. Equipment Shortages Unprecedented chassis shortages continue in essentially all major terminals, including New York/New Jersey, Los Angeles/Long Beach, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Columbus, Cleveland, Chicago, Memphis, Atlanta, Nashville, and Louisville. Additional equipment availability remains an issue at Atlanta, Chicago, Cincinnati, Columbus, Detroit, Kansas City, Minneapolis, Memphis, Nashville, Omaha, St. Louis, South Florida, and Seattle. WB Skinner at Your Side Unprecedented challenges are all-encompassing, affecting ports, carriers, railroads, and trucking throughout the United States. As the front-line representative of your supply chain, please be assured that we will do our very best to help your business successfully navigate through this difficult period. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.