Ryan Petersen, CEO of Flexport, a logistics company with a reported $1.7 billion in yearly revenue, has a must-read thread up from this morning on the shipping crisis at the Port of Long Beach and what he says the Biden administration can enact today to help eliminate the bottleneck.
TL;DR: It’s not the cranes or workers, it’s that there’s literally no place to unload the cargo containers from the ships and there’s no place to store the empty containers so they’re just sitting on trucks. Here’s his five-point solution:
1) Executive order effective immediately over riding the zoning rules in Long Beach and Los Angeles to allow truck yards to store empty containers up to six high instead of the current limit of 2. Make it temporary for ~120 days.
2) Bring every container chassis owned by the national guard and the military anywhere in the US to the ports and loan them to the terminals for 180 days.
3) Create a new temporary container yard at a large (need 500+ acres) piece of government land adjacent to an inland rail head within 100 miles of the port complex.
4) Force the railroads to haul all containers to this new site, turn around and come back. No more 1500 mile train journeys to Dallas. We’re doing 100 mile shuttles, turning around and doing it again. Truckers will go to this site to get containers instead of the port.
5) Bring in barges and small container ships and start hauling containers out of long beach to other smaller ports that aren’t backed up.