Delays at Felixstowe port

As a result of pre-Brexit piling and coronavirus pandemic, the congestion and delays at the port of Felixstowe continue to affect operations of logistic chains in the run-up to Christmas.

The cargo volumes are greater than usual because the flow of goods into the UK was seriously disrupted during the spring lockdown. As a result of opening worldwide economies in the Northern Hemisphere over the summer, there are now more containers coming into the port than normal.

At the same time Felixstowe is struggling to provide storage for 11,000 containers of PPE belonging to the government. The backlog is filling 3o% of the inbound container space at the port.

Felixstowe was handling more than 100,000 containers a week, the spokesman added, but “remains under pressure due to the Covid pandemic, high levels of import traffic, the large number of empty containers, and a large amount of unusually long-stay containers held at the port.”

Congestion at Felixstowe is a problem for the whole country as the Suffolk port handles approximately 40% of all the containers coming into and out of the UK.

The British International Freight Association (BIFA) said the huge stack of containers were making operations difficult at Felixstowe, and adding to problems elsewhere, at other ports such as London Gateway at Thurrock in Essex and at Southampton.

Some vessels have been redirected to Rotterdam due to Felixstowe port not being able to offer berthing bays for up to 10 days.

These issues are affecting retailers badly in the busy period before Christmas and could result in product shortages this festive season.


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