LA, Long Beach targets ‘ugly danger’ for containers left near ports as supply crisis drags on

With shipping delays and cargo piling up in Los Angeles County ports, local officials are tightening the rules as part of an effort to ease congestion of cargo ships anchored off the coast of Southern California.

From November 1, carriers will be charged $ 100 per. container, where the fee increases $ 100 per. container pr. day – but the fee will only be assessed on 15 November.

Charges will be reinvested by ports in programs to increase efficiency and address congestion, according to the announcement.

“This is not meant as a pass-on cost, it is rather thought as ‘let’s move the load’,” Mario Cordero, Port of Long Beach Executive Director, said at a news conference on Wednesday. In an attempt to ease logjam, Long Beach of cargo-staking in ports.

The global supply chain crisis has increased the need for local ports to make room for bottleneck freight. “The terminals are running out of space. We need space in our terminals, about 530,000 container units are sitting on the waiting ships,” Cordero added.

In response, the Port of Los Angeles and Long Beach announced days ago that seagoing vessels will be charged for each container that exceeds their visit to the port complex: nine days or more if moved by truck, and three days or more if moved . by rail.

Cordero said that “30 to 40% of the cargo at the naval terminals has been there for more than 9 days.”

‘We try to protect our own’

A sign blocks trucks from entering Wilmington, near a key port in Long Beach.  The port has been one of 2 lagging nodes in Southern California at the center of a worsening supply chain crisis.

A sign blocks trucks from entering Wilmington, near a key port in Long Beach. The port has been one of 2 lagging nodes in Southern California at the center of a worsening supply chain crisis.

Meanwhile, the lack of space for containers has given rise to a major bottleneck in the ports of Southern California. Empty containers are piled up on truck yards, outside department stores – and some are even thrown out the side of the road.

Truckers, however, insist that it is a function of the port crisis, rather than negligence on their part.

“They’re on the street because no one is receiving,” Carlos Rameriz, a truck driver, said in an interview with Yahoo Finance.

Drivers are “indifferent. They just drop it on the street. There are a lot of empty containers on Washington Street because [ports] have no place to place them and they get tickets, after tickets I do not know who pays for them, ”Rameriz added.

Some of the empty containers are sitting on the chassis because there is no other space as Rameriz has described. The congestion also has truck trailers because unloading of containers from the ships has been .

It has become a vicious circle as a stream of imports continues to flood the besieged ports of Southern California ahead of the holiday. And with overflows at the ports, containers are finding their way to residential roads.

Unattended chassis is located on a street in Wilmington, near a key port in Long Beach.  The port has been one of 2 lagging nodes in Southern California at the center of a worsening supply chain crisis.

Unattended chassis is located on a street in Wilmington, near a key port in Long Beach. The port has been one of 2 lagging nodes in Southern California at the center of a worsening supply chain crisis.

An accident was especially the source of after a shipping container made a car flat after it had fallen off a truck. No one was injured, but it happened in Wilmington, near the Port of Los Angeles, where the oceanic gridlock leads to a similar effect on the streets.

“It’s a very ugly danger,” Vivian Martinez, a resident of Wilmington, told Yahoo Finance in an interview.

Residents living near the ports have complained about the intrusion of containers and how trucks are backed up in the streets all the time, even before Long Beach relaxed its zoning rules.

“They do not want to park here. We do not allow it. If they try to get through here, I’m going out with a trash can or our cars. [it makes] the haulier goes all the way back, ”Martinez said.

Residents like Martinez have had enough of this long-standing problem that has exploded since the pandemic. Some have erected barriers at both ends of the street with signs saying “No trucks” – the latest chapter in a crisis that stems in part from unintended consequences.

“We are trying to protect our own,” Martinez added.

Officials have responded to these concerns by cracking down on companies for stacking containers in violation of local zoning laws.

“Law enforcement has issued over 400 citations for illegally parked trucks with containers,” LA City Councilman Joe Buscaino told Yahoo Finance in a statement.

“My office is actively working with the Port of Los Angeles to identify viable plots of port-owned land in industrial areas to store containers and perform trucking away from adjacent residential areas,” Buscaino added.

Buscaino noted that he had some success in identifying packages and his next step is to identify an operator that can facilitate the organization of containers being processed at these new locations.

This follows Governor Gavin Newsom’s executive order, which aims to ease the backlog. He instructed public authorities to look for state-owned properties that could temporarily store goods entering ports.

Newsom asked the state Department of General Services to review potential sites by Dec. 15, but it is still unclear whether LA will follow Long Beach’s lead in easing the rules for container stacking.

Dani Romero is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @daniromerotv

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