UK Container Ports.
There are issues at all major southern UK ports.
It started mid September at Felixstowe which had problems with its Vehicle Booking System for 24hrs and arriving containerships then not accepting empty containers to be loaded on their vessels outwith the port creating a backlog in the container storage depot and therefore the port refusing to accept restituted containers, creating in itself extra logistics hurdles and increased costs.
Furthermore, crucially, the port is still experiencing low staff numbers of port staff and drivers, many staff stuck outside of the UK apparently due to covid travel restrictions. Although Felixstowe will now accept restituted containers staff levels remain low.
Import container delivery transport needs much more planning with slots available much later than typically experienced due to shortages (now up to 3 weeks in some cases) meaning a knock on effect of quay rent & demurrage to import clients.
LCL import timings are also much longer meaning delays. The majority of LCL operators are now surcharging arrivals at Felixstowe with emergency surcharges to recover additional costs.
The problems are now starting to be experienced at other ports like Southampton and London Gateway.
Seasonal weather strikes of high wind closing port operations are further compounding the problems of delays and transport booking slot coordination.
Updated from original notice sent to core clients 2/10/20.