California Port Truckers ‘Drowning’ in Supply Chain Inefficiencies

Despite recent reports that congestion issues are easing on the water at California's major ports, drayage truckers claim this isn't the case for them -- as long wait times, a flawed appointment system and other efficiency issues continue to plague marine terminal operators in the state. From a report: As Port of Oakland officials are urging ocean carriers to add direct services to their port to help relieve supply chain bottlenecks at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, truckers whose livelihoods depend on how many containers they can turn in a day are bracing for possible extra capacity if steamship lines skip Southern California and head to Oakland. "All we hear in the news is the lack of congestion on the waterside and we can confirm that, but we are drowning on the landside by long lines and staffing issues at the terminals," Bill Aboudi, president of AB Trucking, told FreightWaves this week. An unreliable appointment system has drayage companies checking day and night to find open slots and vessel schedule changes -- which Aboudi compared to playing musical chairs -- have truckers concerned they won't be able to handle a container volume increase if some of these issues aren't addressed soon. A group of trucking company owners, each with about 30 years of drayage experience under their belts, are working with port officials in Oakland to create a task force to air their grievances and open the lines of communications with marine terminal operators.

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