truck with flatbed on highway

China’s port lockdowns threaten domestic trucking

From Transport Topics.

China locking down key port cities because of a new outbreak of the coronavirus could have serious ramifications for trucking in the United States.
“We are seeing a slowdown in cargo volume due to COVID-19 shutdowns in Shanghai,” Port of Long Beach Executive Director Mario Cordero told Transport Topics. “We would expect to eventually see a corresponding uptick or even a slight surge in cargo volume as the supply chain would be expected to catch up. This has been the pattern in the past as China has dealt with COVID outbreaks.”

FourKites data from May 3 shows the two-week average shipment volume for loads traveling from China to the United States was down 20% as of April 29, compared with the day before lockdowns went into effect in Shenzhen and Shanghai on March 12. Still, it does show some signs of recovery with average shipment volumes being down 36% as of April 20.

“I think we’re going to see the ripple effect pretty quickly,” said Ryan Closser, director of network enablement at FourKites. “There’ll be downstream ramifications pretty quickly. It is going to start at the ports immediately. But I think all the trucking companies are going to feel it.”

Closser noted the slowdown could then be followed by a surge of ships when the lockdowns lift. This could cause bottlenecks when they finally reach the West Coast. He estimates that another two to four weeks of lockdowns could cause serious issues domestically.

See the complete article online at Transport Topics.