Matthew Shay, president of the National Retail Federation, said congestion in the Port of New York and New Jersey is having a negative economic impact on the supply chains of his members and business partners.
In a letter dated July 30
, he detailed the cost of delays at the port and asked the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to work with terminal operators to help alleviate congestion in the port and resolve problems before they get worse.
Shay said "while the problem stems from the introduction of new computer processes at Maher Terminals, we understand that the congestion problems are now impacting the other terminals as well."
Last week, Maher and its software provider Navis issued a statement, saying "the implementation of the new operating systems at Maher’s Elizabeth, N.J. facility has turned the corner, as service has returned to acceptable levels during the past several weeks, albeit at reduced volume."
"NRF members have experienced significant delays within their supply chains," Shay said. "The delays are impacting both import and export containers. The economic costs from the delays not only include increased transportation and storage costs, but opportunity costs from lost sales for products that were scheduled to be on store shelves."
In the letter, Shay noted some retailers have had dozens of containers with millions of dollars of merchandise arriving at the port without being able to retrieve them promptly.
He said some members are paying thousands of additional dollars as a result of the congestion, with increased costs coming from storage at the terminal, for longer driver wait-times of up to six hours and for additional chassis rental days due to not being able to return empties in a timely manner either.
"A retailer noted that most drayage operators are now charging an additional $65 per container for the additional wait time. This translates to about $6,000 per week for this retailer. When compared to NRF Port Tracker information, that will be an additional $8,000,000 a month in these charges alone for the industry," Shay said.
Virginia's Daily Press
newspaper said Hampton Roads' terminals are getting a cargo surge from cargo diverted from New York
In late July, Hapag-Lloyd suggested shippers reroute cargo where possible
, saying it did not expect normal service to be restored until approximately the middle of September. - Chris Dupin