3PLs ready themselves for freight diversion in event of port strike

For many shippers, it may too late to change plans

By ·

While the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service – the federal agency charged with mediating private sector labor disputes – has the International Longshoremen’s Association meeting with management to avert an East Coast and Gulf port strike, shippers are bracing for the worst before the December 29 deadline.

For many it may too late, said Ann Bruno, vice president of Global Trade for New Freedom, PA-based TBB Supply Chain Guardian.

“But we have been preparing for this eventuality for months and have implemented a contingency plan that will help us continue delivering strategic advice to key shippers,” she said.

According to Bruno, TBB’s contingency plan has includes the following action items:

• Delivery orders have been issued and truckers have been instructed to remove every shipment from the ports, prior to the projected strike date;
• Import clients with cargo scheduled to arrive after December 29th have been contacted and presented contingency transportation plans, ranging from delayed shipment and re-routing to shipping via air freight as alternatives;
• Export clients have been contacted and encouraged to shift the timing of their shipments to dates prior to December 29th;
• Bullet mini land bridge rates have been filed with the Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) and other carriers, to facilitate the transport of East coast cargo through West coast ports;
• Shipments to and from Europe will be moved through Independent Container Line (ICL) out of Chester, Pennsylvania.

Meanwhile, said Bruno, the TBB team is monitoring this situation “around the clock” and will continuously to advise its clients and industry contacts of any changes or updates that may occur in the coming days.

“We are committed to doing everything and anything we can to minimize the impact of this situation for our clients,” she said.

About the Author

Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at [email protected]

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