Added measures to handle cargo increase
December 22, 2014
Added measures at Port of Oakland to handle cargo increase
Weekend gate, daily status updates help address unprecedented vessel traffic
Oakland, CA – Dec. 22, 2014 – The Port of Oakland said today it has taken additional steps in an ongoing effort to manage container ships arriving with unprecedented frequency in San Francisco Bay. The measures include:
- A Sunday gate opened yesterday at one of the Port's largest marine terminals to discharge additional import cargo; and
- An operational status update sent daily to hundreds of harbor truckers, ocean carriers and shippers to improve supply chain planning.
The added features are expected to improve cargo flow slowed by increased container volume and a multitude of delayed vessels arriving simultaneously. In the last three days alone, 13 ships called in Oakland; most well behind schedule. Maritime officials say the number of ships in the Bay outstrips anything seen in the past decade.
"We welcome increased cargo volume at Oakland and we've got to do a better job of managing the flow," said Port Maritime Director John Driscoll. "We're working every day with the marine terminals, truck drivers and shippers to pick up the pace."
Import cargo volume has increased at Oakland in each of the last three months compared to 2013 totals. The gains resulted from aggressive marketing as well as congestion at other ports which caused cargo diversions to Oakland. The Port has said it has capacity to accept additional containers. But operations have been hampered by off-schedule ships and recent labor-management disputes on the docks. The result has been a slowdown in cargo movement and long lines of trucks waiting to enter terminals.
The Port has responded with extended hours, night gates and dedicated lanes in terminals to expedite simple transactions. It's meeting regularly with harbor truckers to address their issues in hauling cargo. The daily status update launched today will provide the latest information on vessel arrivals, terminal operations and truck queues outside terminal gates.
The Port of Oakland leases marine terminals to operating companies that manage the facilities. It said terminal operators plan to continue occasional night and weekend gates until cargo flows normalize. Cargo volume is expected to moderate soon now that the peak holiday shipping season has passed.
About the Port of Oakland
The Port of Oakland oversees the Oakland seaport and Oakland International Airport. The Port's jurisdiction includes 20 miles of waterfront from the Bay Bridge through Oakland International Airport. The Oakland seaport is the fifth busiest container port in the U.S.; Oakland International Airport is the second largest San Francisco Bay Area airport offering over 300 daily passenger and cargo flights; and the Port’s real estate includes commercial developments such as Jack London Square and hundreds of acres of public parks and conservation areas. Together, through Port operations and those of its tenants and users, the Port supports more than 73,000 jobs in the region and nearly 827,000 jobs across the United States. The Port of Oakland was established in 1927 and is an independent department of the City of Oakland.
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