Nov 17

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Oh, the weather outside is frightful

6 minute read
Oh, the weather outside is frightful Featured Image

Here is proof that I could be crazy BUT I LOVE the snow! Buffalo is due to get a lake effect storm over the next couple of days and I am so happy – crazy to think that 2 weeks ago it was almost 80 degrees here. Although the heavenly beauty of a winter wonderland makes me so happy, it makes everything a little bit tougher logistically speaking. Please remember that the truck drivers out there are doing their best and their safety comes first. Shipping delays may cause agony during the holidays but are a much better alternative than a life changing accident. Life brings obstacles, especially in logistics and we are all doing our best with what is dealt to us! 

So yeah, the strikes continue… Maybe the Unions are Never, Ever, Ever… Getting Back Together! With the ports and rails? The Unions should talk to Taylor Swift’s management team, she is pulling in $50k for a concert ticket, and these guys just want more sick days.  

Members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) shut down vessel operations at the Oakland International Container Terminal (OICT) Monday in the latest West Coast port disruption to occur amid longshore contract talks that have now dragged on for more than six months.

This past Monday workers stopped unloading and loading vessels, and started marking containers for an exam even though it wasn’t required.

Terminal/Union strikes are beginning. The union workers are causing delays internally within their operations, causing delays for all truckers.

Empty equipment shortages are on the rise, terminals do not have the empty containers available for exports.

Prepare for container backups and containers being moved to “Off-dock” facilities – once containers are put in “Off-dock” facilities they are unable to be picked up until the terminal moves them to designated pickup areas and puts them in “available” status.

The Union contract expired July 1st of this year and since then no negotiation has been confirmed and the workers are causing hardships with day to day tasks. 

What is Sus’ in the rail market?

The Memphis Norfolk Southern closed their gates this past Tuesday and Wednesday at the Raines (AUX R2) Rossville lot location due to a crane issue. They have halted the demurrage clock for those 2 days and the lot reopened today (Nov 17th) at 8 am. Expect some delays with containers located within that facility.    

Let’s talk Chicago and Dallas – I rounded up a couple Port X Logistics industry all-stars to get the scoop on these 2 rails that have been a spotlight this week. Let me take a quick second to shamelessly plug our team – if you have industry questions pertaining to a certain market at any moment in time, our team is here to help. Please reach out to us at all hours, we got you covered. Learning about the industry and current events are what we love to talk about the most. Pick our brains, and like we always say at Port X Logistics – “We have stories!”    

Our resident Chicago specialist Danny Dimillo passed on the news about the continued congestion at the Chicago Union Pacific Global IV Rail (Joliet) which has gotten continuously worse since the end of September. Some steamship lines moved more westbound units out of Chicago than eastbound imports, creating some short-term congestion at Global IV and high chassis street dwell times also further the delays and rail pile container stacking. When containers are put into stacks, it indicates normal operations have been disrupted.

Rookie Port X Logistics Team member Chris D’Angelo has been dealing with all things Dallas since he joined us in August and is already a Dallas Rail pro. He reported that Dallas has been experiencing big time chassis shortages. 

According to some of his drivers: Congestion at the BNSF is manageable, but Congestion at Union Pacific rail is flat out crazy. Drivers are reporting waiting upwards of 10+ hours in the flip line to try and recover their stacked containers that have been there for months. Even after waiting 10+ hours, drivers are still being turned away. This is due in part to UP introducing a new program which is assisting with pulling out stacked containers. However, the UP is not equipped to do this as they only have 2 lifts to work on containers. Drivers have reported they are able to load 1 container every 30-45 minutes which is leading to the 10+ hour waiting times (pictured). 

One of Chris’s drivers took a photo this morning waiting at UP with our own chassis to get loaded. 30+ drivers ahead of him. And as of 2 pm that driver is still waiting! 

TRAC Intermodal said they have brought 375 additional chassis into Dallas and is in the process of moving another 300 from other markets. TRAC is predicting everything to be moving fluidly by mid-to-late December.

Import TEU volumes increased this week up 7.3% from last week. However, Los Angeles and Long Beach volumes are still down. The uncertainties of the strikes have been forcing shippers to lean more on importing to the East Coast and Gulf Ports and the holiday import boom is over for 2022. We have a couple sale-a-holics on the Port X Logistics Team (I may or may not be included in that category) and we .. oops.. I mean “they” seem to think the stores are over inflated with excess fall and winter inventory. Be on the lookout for a HUGE early Black Friday starting this weekend. Super exciting! For them.. not me… 

What are the port hardships this week?

·       Oakland With the temporary vessel operation shut down on Monday at OICT, there is a backlog and even more containers in “Off-dock” status. The upcoming  holiday with also further delay container availability 

What looks positive this week?

·       Charleston I have had incredible success with exporting out of Charleston as of late. I have seen very little rolled bookings and everything moving out seamlessly. The project to deepen Charleston’s harbor to 52 feet caps is expected to come to completion this month. An 11-year effort that will enable the port to handle the 20,000-TEU ships calling the US East Coast with growing imports from Southeast Asia and the Indian Subcontinent. The project, in which the entrance to the channel was also widened from 47 to 54 feet, will make Charleston one of the deepest harbors on the East Coast.

Did you know? Port X Logistics will be featured on What The Truck tomorrow afternoon, November 17th, to talk about frustration-free expedited trucking service, Carrier 911 and what to do in air freight emergencies. Find us at: or

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