Over the past several months, a combination of infrastructure and
labor issues has exacerbated congestion at ports up and down the
West Coast of the U.S. The problems, which began in late summer
2014, initially stemmed from a shortage of truck drivers and the
chassis equipment used to haul containers to and from Los
Angeles’ shipping terminals.
Adding to the troubles were record import volumes entering West Coast ports and an increase of massive container ships that were deluging the docks with cargo.
This combination pushed the limits of the terminals’ capacity to
work ships in a reasonable time. As a result, vessels began to stack
up outside the harbors, incurring escalating bunker fees
while valuable merchandise sat idle. By the time the holiday
shopping season rolled around last year, there was still no