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Railroad Logjam Now Slowing Cargo Shipments from Port of Los Angeles

Containers are unloaded at the Port of Long Beach
Containers are unloaded at the Port of Long Beach. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Railroads and importers need to move cargo stacked at the nation’s busiest port in Los Angeles to avoid worsening supply chain congestion, the port’s chief said Wednesday.

“We need to take action on this matter immediately to avoid a nationwide conflict” Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka said in a media conference call.

Rail service disruptions are slowing freight flows in the US and helping to boost inflation, which is at a 40-year high.

As backlogs at the Port of Los Angeles threaten to undo progress, workers have been clearing docks after pandemic-fueled imports swamped the property and left more than 100 ships queuing offshore.

More than 29,000 rail containers sit on Southern California port docks. That number shouldn’t be more than 9,000, Seroka said.

He called on importers to expedite the receipt of containers and on railways to send crews, locomotives and railcars to the port to clear the goods.

owned by Union Pacific and Berkshire Hathaway BNSF serving the Port of Los Angeles. These and other major U.S. railroads cut jobs and equipment before the pandemic upended the nation’s transportation systems.

Contract negotiations between the railroads and unions representing 115,000 of their workers have been deadlocked after more than two years. Both sides in the talks expect President Joe Biden to appoint a committee to propose terms for a deal.

Rail cost-cutting moves fueled earnings, but “there was no buffer” for demand shocks and service disruptions caused by home shoppers overspending on exercise equipment, furniture, appliances and other goods, the analyst said. of Stifel, Ben Nolan.

The containers clogged rail lines in Chicago and elsewhere in the Midwest before making their way to other parts of the country.

Union Pacific and BNSF say they are working to address labor and equipment shortages. They said their business depends on timely cargo pickups and quick equipment returns.

Railroad Logjam Now Slowing Cargo Shipments from Port of Los Angeles Source link Railroad Logjam Now Slowing Cargo Shipments from Port of Los Angeles

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