In anticipation of a potential strike, lockout, work stoppage, slow down or labor unrest at U.S. Pacific Coast Ports, many ocean carriers filed Port Congestion Surcharges in their FMC tariffs earlier this year, but did not apply these surcharges. We are advised today due to recent developments at these ports several carriers are now preparing to begin applying these surcharges effective Monday 11/17/2014.

Customer advisory: November 2014

Months-long labor dispute continues to slow, even halt operations at West Coast ports!

The dispute between the maritime shippers and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU), which represents 20,000 full and part-time dockworkers on the West Coast, has been brewing since the six-year contract expired July 1st. Since October, members of the ILWU have worked slowly and walked off the job, resulting in growing congestion during this critical harvest and impending retail season.

With more than two-thirds of all U.S. international trade moving through West Coast ports and Black Friday approaching, the Obama administration has met with the National Retail Federation and the National Association of Manufacturers to address the dispute. The six U.S. senators from California, Oregon and Washington sent an open letter to both parties, seeking to prevent the slowdowns from escalating to a complete shutdown.

We will continue to monitor this crucial situation and work diligently to deliver your shipments as quickly and efficiently as possible. We will also communicate with you closely on each shipment effected and keep you informed as negotiations ensue.

East & Gulf Coast Labor Contract Update

The ILA contract covering most of the East and Gulf coast ports expired on 09/30/2012.  The ILA and the USMEX agreed to extend the contract until 12/29/2012, to keep the ports open and working.  However, at this time a resolution is not expected as both sides appear to be far from agreement.  Statements from the trade community have indicated they plan to send a letter urging both parties to seek a quick resolution, hoping to avoid port closures.  Port closures would be very damaging to exporters and importers alike, as witnessed by the LA/LGB strike.


Due to the congestion created by the 8 day strike at the LA/Long Beach terminals Hanjin has announced the following Westbound US to Far East/Asia/Australia Congestion Surcharge.

Effective:                  December 10th, 2012

Expiration:                 December 28th, 2012

Application:    IPI Cargo Via Long Beach, CA, Los Angeles, CA Ports 

Amount:         $160/20’        $200/40’

Note: Applicable to all container types