Ports and terminals continue to operate as essential businesses during COVID-19 outbreak
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, more states in the US are issuing “Shelter in Place” orders requiring non-essential businesses to close. Ports and terminals, however, have continued running as they are considered essential businesses.
Last week, two terminals at the Port of Houston closed temporarily due to COVID-19, but they were able to resume operations within 48 hours, with minimal disruption. Outside the US, some areas (including Fuzhou in China and Queensland, Australia) have implemented a 14-day ban on ships entering their ports.
With the situation changing on a nearly daily basis, it’s hard to predict what extent the spread of the virus will have on global supply chains. What is clear is that worker shortages, restricted access to roads, and the movement of cargo will have compounding effects as the situation evolves—all of which drives the need to stay current on the movement of goods.
As you track your shipments, be sure to check your “needs attention” list on your dashboard for notifications about vessel delays, holds on your containers, and upcoming last free days. In addition, you can set alarms on your containers to get notified as soon as your container has discharged from the vessel and is ready for pickup.
Being aware of ETAs, arrival times, and your container availability are more important now that ever. Terminals will still charge storage fees if you are not able to take receipt of your cargo before the last free day due to COVID-19.
Keep up to date on the impact of COVID-19 on supply chains, by visiting the Flexport Covid-19 global trade insights page, and stay healthy.