Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Fariview looks to new year to return to industry expected dwell time levels

Service levels are returning to benchmark status for Fairview Terminal
following a fall of shipment delays and other issues at the container port

(photo from the Port of PR website)

After a final quarter of 2017 which saw Fairview Terminal struggle to meet some of its historical dwell time levels, Port officials are hopeful that the new year will bring a return to the days of a two and a half day dwell time for those vessels calling on the container facility on the city's waterfront.

As we noted through the final three months of last year, the ports performance levels had slipped from September through December, with construction related to the expansion of the second berth noted as part of the issue which saw the usually quick turn around for vessels at Fairview stretching beyond the port's much trumpeted advantage of a two and a half day service.

December -- Dwell times concerns creeping up on Fairview Terminal again
September -- Dwell time woes grow for Fairview Terminal; with second container line diversion plans
September -- 'Dwell time" issues at Fairview see Cosco containers diverted south

Other issues noted at the time were terminal congestion and train delays both into Prince Rupert and across the CN system through the fall, all of which contributed to concerns from some shipping lines as to the ability to move their cargo in a timely fashion.

At one point in the fall, container lines had taken the extraordinary move of shifting their landings to Vancouver as the service to Prince Rupert suffered its slower levels of service.

Those issues would seem to be in the past however, with the trade publication the Journal of Commerce noting this week, that the Port is now assuring its customers that the dwell time at the Fairview facility is now listed at an average of three days, with the return to the two and a half day level considered imminent.

That 2.5 day turn around mark is now considered the industry average and with the added capacity at Prince Rupert and the issues of the fall now behind them, the opportunity for the Port of Prince Rupert to continue to build their footprint in the container shipping industry remains on a positive growth trend.

The ability to keep the containers moving quickly from ship to rail is proving to be a growing challenge for port operators as the volume of vessels transiting from Asia to North America grows both in numbers of vessels and in the nature of the mega-ships that are now coming into service in the global shipping industry.

Should Prince Rupert be able to keep to its two and a half day dwell time benchmark, the potential to attract other shipping lines to use the facility could see expanded opportunities for local longshore workers and with that, the prospect for further expansion of the container terminal towards the southern shoreline.

You can review the full overview from the Journal of Commerce here, gaining a bit of of a glimpse into the Prince Rupert issues and a chance to explore how the industry publication views the short term future for the container industry.

More notes related to Fairview Terminal can be found on our archive page here, while a wider overview of Port items is available here.

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