Long Beach’s initiative to prioritize and maximize dual transactions is part of a broader five-part program to provide immediate relief to congestion problems that are projected to continue at least until volumes in the eastbound trans-Pacific experience a temporary lull during the Lunar New Year holiday in Asia that will begin on Feb. 12.
The other initiatives include adding gate hours and expanding operational shifts at the terminals, maximizing the aggregation of containers for large importers into peel-off piles, offering special gates or exemptions for high-volume customers, and optimizing operational use of terminal space and equipment through the creation of near-dock container/chassis yards.
The Port of Los Angeles has announced similar initiatives, such as the launch Thursday of a near-dock site to be used as a stop/start yard for the temporary storage of chassis as well as empty containers before their delivery to marine terminals for return to Asia. That initiative is also designed to free up terminal space for cargo handling and to optimize trucker operations in the harbor.
Hacegaba said everything the port is hearing from its customers points to continued strong import volumes into the Lunar New Year and possibly well into 2021. “That’s why we’re asking terminals to bring immediate solutions to the chronic pain points,” he said.