Felixstowe experiences sharp spike in import container volumes

Felixstowe container port

The Port of Felixstowe is experiencing a high demand for both rail and road capacity caused by a sharp spike in import container volumes.

The Port has apologised to its customers and in a statement said, “our service standards are not currently where we would like them to be and we apologise for any inconvenience caused”.

The issue has been further compounded by a high proportion of late vessel arrivals, according to the Port.

The Port of Felixstowe is home to the UK’s largest container terminal.

Since around the early September the Port has experienced a weekly import volume of over 30% higher than average levels.

The unusually high levels of empty containers at the port and the impact of the ongoing Covid-19 crisis on resource availability is also exacerbating the problem.  

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To rectify the problem the Port is taking a number of measures including increasing VBS booking availability to 4,300 vehicles per day, opening on Sunday for haulage collection and recruiting and training over 100 additional front line equipment drivers which had not been possible during lockdown.

Regarding the empty containers the Port is working with its customers to temporarily slow down and reduce the number of empty containers being returned to the port by rail and road, to ensure it does not run out of storage space.

Finally, the Port is Improving labour availability, and preparing for a possible second wave of Covid -19, by securing private testing for our employees to minimise the period people need to self-isolate if they, or a family member, display symptoms.

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