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Riding the storm out

By Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
October 29, 2012

Based in the Northeast, it is hard not to think about what Hurricane Sandy may have in store for us. It could be, as many have predicted, the most significant hurricane in the last 70-to-100 years, or it could fall well short of the advance hype and billing.

Who really knows at this point? Of course, if you are based in the Mid-Atlantic region and already feeling the impact, then please be safe and secure.

That in itself is likely the most important takeaway of this situation. Making sure everything is accounted for and having shelter and security. And it would be naïve to say this does not apply to the business of moving freight, because it most certainly does.

Carriers and states have issued notices about operations and storm warnings in the last 24 hours or so and many more figure to follow, especially in the next two days at a minimum.

American Trucking Associations President and CEO Bill Graves urged that motorists and truckers alike be cautious on the nation’s roads as the storm approaches.

“With weather forecasters and emergency management officials already sounding the alarm about the potential for widespread damage from Hurricane Sandy and a possible early winter storm, we are asking all motorists and truckers to use appropriate caution and common sense,” Graves said. “There’s no delivery, no errand that is worth putting
yourself or others in danger.”

That last part is very true. Being safe and smart trumps everything else in situations like these. I am home-based and am not typically on the road all that much for things like morning and evening commutes but if I am on the road today for any reason, I will be cautious to say the least.

Hurricane Conditions are obviously not limited to the roads; the rails can be impacted as well.

Norfolk Southern said it has implemented emergency plans for the Northeast region that could be affected by Hurricane Sandy. With traffic in Virginia through New England potentially being impacted by heavy rains, flooding, and high winds, NS said rail traffic in these areas should expect delays of at least 72 hours.

And CSX said its network from Richmond, Va., north to Albany, N.Y., was to be shut down no later than 3 a.m. today as Hurricane Sandy moves toward landfall in the Northeast, adding that this closure will include Boston, Mass., and extend as far west as Brunswick, Md.

CSX said freight customers are urged to secure rail cars in their facilities on high ground, away from any potential flood-impacted areas and is estimating at least 72 hours of delay on freight traffic moving through the Northeast region.

Even if you are a casual observer of the news, it is hard to overlook what may be in store. Whether you are moving freight or making a quick trip to the grocery store, remember to be safe.

About the Author

Jeff Berman headshot
Jeff Berman
Group News Editor

Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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