Imports spike at ports across US, Hapag-Lloyd warns of terminal congestion

Maersk shipping containers

Dwell times at the terminal are showing signs of improvement, but Executive Director Gene Seroka said he still considers the figures to be high. Container dwell on terminals is 4.1 days, down from five in January. And street dwell time waiting for warehouse space averaged 6.3 days for a 40-foot container in February, which is down from 7.6 in January, Seroka said.

"We need to cut both the terminal and street dwell time to pre-pandemic level," he said.

The consumer-driven import surge that has stressed Port of Los Angeles' operations is not showing any sign of letting up, Seroka said.

"With more people getting vaccinated, the latest stimulus checks in the mail and in-store safety protocols increasing, there are more options for American buyers," he said.

Retail sales did drop more than 3% in February compared to the previous month, according to the latest release from the Census Bureau. But economists have said this was more a result of the winter weather than an indication of a slowing economy.

The National Retail Federation said it expects retail sales to grow between 6.5% and 8.2% YoY in 2021.

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Source: Supply Chain Dive

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