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Canadian Terminal and Warehouse Congestion

Supply chain disruptions, which have greatly affected US bound cargo, are now starting to be felt in Canada. At the present time the situation is most severe in Vancouver, where the main problem relates to container chassis availability and warehouse overcapacity. Part of this issue stems from inbound containers being terminated at port, as many ocean carriers are not offering inland services at this time.

As a result, many Vancouver area warehouses are taking on cross docking services, causing much higher demand for container drayage and destuffing. This has resulted in a backlog of consolidated containers waiting to be offloaded, causing containers to be stored at warehouse yards or held at port terminals. The situation is compounded if containers remain on chassis at warehouse yards, as this reduces the supply of equipment required to handle other containers.

In many cases this is resulting in extra costs being incurred, which could include chassis detention as well as container demurrage and storage.

The situation in Toronto and Montreal, while not as dire as Vancouver, is getting worse as destuffing warehouses are faced with overcapacity, due to the sheer volume of inbound cargo. This is delaying the unloading of containers considerably and, as in Vancouver, is resulting in extra costs being incurred as the existing supply chain struggles with ongoing excessive volume.

At this point it is difficult to predict when these issues will be resolved, but as volume levels remain high, relief from this situation is not foreseen in the near future.

We will continue to monitor this situation and advise accordingly.

For more information, please call David Lychek, Director – Ocean & Air Services at (905) 882-4880, ext. 1207.

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