58 cargo ships in Port of Los Angeles prevented by Gridlock
Written by: Ejay Nieva
More than two dozen container ships loaded with exercise bikes, gadgets, and other high-demand goods have been languishing off the shore of Los Angeles for up to two weeks.
The pandemic has affected trade to an unprecedented extent worldwide, driving up the cost of shipping products and posing a new threat to the improving global economy.
The outbreak has knocked off the logistics of transporting goods from one continent to the next. The shipping container, globalization’s workhorse, has been at the core of the storm.
Americans stranded at home have triggered a spike of purchases from manufacturers worldwide in preparation for the holiday season, with most of it being transported over the Pacific in containers — the metal boxes that transport products in towering stacks atop massive ships.
And, when ships do dock with cargo to unload, they are routinely trapped in floating traffic jams for days. Due to the epidemic and its limitations, dockworkers and truck drivers are in short supply, causing delays in cargo transport from Southern California to Singapore. Every container that cannot be emptied in one location may also not be loaded in another.
Mario Cordero, Executive Director, Port of Long Beach, said in a press statement, “This is historic; it’s epic. In normal times, there are zero, maybe at best, one or two vessels that anchor. Americans are buying at a high level, appliances, furniture, and we’re getting ready for the holiday sales here.”
Each ship carries 12,000-20,000 containers, and it would take 2-3 days of unloading to complete the work at the port. However, due to reduced manpower, the gridlock from the Port of Los Angeles may take a while to be solved.
Mario Cordero advises Americans that it’s best to purchase holiday gifts in advance and avoid doing it at the last minute to avoid delays.
📷 Bloomberg