Port of Oakland attracts “mega” container vessel

As shippers speculate on the pending impact of the Panama Canal expansion on U.S. West Coast ports, Oakland is demonstrating that it can still attract “mega vessels” in the Asia Pacific trade

By ·

The Port of Oakland welcomes the largest containership ever to call any seaport in North America today.

As shippers speculate on the pending impact of the Panama Canal expansion on U.S. West Coast ports, Oakland is demonstrating that it can still attract “mega vessels” in the Asia Pacific trade.

The MSC Fabiola is a 12,562 TEU (twenty-foot equivalent-unit) vessel; an average container equals two TEUs.  It is part of the fleet of the world’s second-largest shipping company, Geneva-based Mediterranean Shipping Co SA.  MSC is one of the Port of Oakland’s fastest-growing carriers.

The vessel will arrive from the Port of Long Beach tomorrow and will be berthed at Oakland International Container Terminal.  It will depart Thursday for an 18-day trans-Pacific voyage to Fuzhou and then onto four other ports in China.

Walt Rakowich, co-chief executive officer of Prologis, told shippers attending the International Warehouse Logistics Association’s 2012 Convention in San Francisco, that there are too many “unknowns” associated with alternatives to West Coast port calls.

“We don’t know, for example, if the East Coast and Gulf ports will be able to handle the volume,” he said. “And the concentration of population and industry in California is hard to dismiss.”

The MSC Fabiola is almost a quarter mile long, more than the length of four football fields or about equal to the height of a 55-story building.  If all of the containers that fit on the ship were put end to end, they would stretch almost 50 miles.

Generally, ships arriving at Oakland carry imports such as electronics, wood furniture, apparel, bedding, toys, sports equipment, auto parts, coffee, and bicycles.  When they depart, they carry exports including dried fruit and nuts, wine, rice, cotton, recycled paper and metal scrap, machinery, chilled and frozen meat and poultry, and vehicles.


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]

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Article Topics

Ocean Cargo · Ocean Freight · Trade · All Topics
Latest Whitepaper
Maximizing Your Sales Team’s Effectiveness
Companies need to examine how to restructure their sales team to respond to different customers and subsequent buying behaviors and preferences.
Download Today!
From the November 2017 Logistics Management Magazine Issue
An inside look at how a large pharmaceutical firm transformed its vendor and supplier relationships into true, collaborative partnerships—and greatly strengthened its logistics and supply chain operations in the process.
34th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: 2017 Awards Dinner
Trucking Regulations: Washington U-Turns; States put hammer down
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Make Your Products Smarter in the Supply Chain with the IoT
This webinar explores how temperature-sensing smart labels and inexpensive NFC tags are being used to extend product safety and efficiency beyond the shipping dock while also building a communication bridge to your customers.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
2017 NASSTRAC Shipper of the Year: Mallinckrodt; Mastering and managing complexity
An inside look at how a large pharmaceutical firm transformed its vendor and supplier relationships...
2017 Alliance Awards: Recognizing outstanding supply chain partnerships
In an era where effective supply chain collaboration is both highly valued and elusive, Logistics...

26th Annual Study of Logistics and Transportation Trends: Transportation at Digital Speed
While a majority of companies strongly agree that transportation is a strategically important...
34th Annual Quest for Quality Awards: Winners Revealed
Which carriers, third-party logistics providers, and North American ports have crossed the service...