Hurricane Ian cripples Southeast US supply chains


Supply chains in the Southeast US have been severely impacted due to the continued fallout from Hurricane Ian, according to new data from FourKites.

Hurricane Ian, which made landfall on 28 September, led to a massive reduction in deliveries made to cities in the path of the hurricane, with some metropolitan areas seeing as much as a 60 per cent week-over-week reduction in shipments being delivered.

As of 2 October, the seven-day average number of deliveries made in Florida is down by 32 per cent week-over-week and down 31 per cent month-over-month.

South Carolina and Georgia also saw some slight impact to supply chains following Hurricane Ian last week.

In South Carolina, the seven-day average delivery volume is down 6 per cent week-over-week and down 7 per cent month-over-month. In Georgia, the seven-day average delivery volume is down 6 per cent week-over-week and down 4 per cent month-over-month.

Effects are already being felt downstream in the supply chain, particularly in other Southeastern states. The seven-day average shipment volume for loads being picked up from Florida and delivered to Georgia was down 30 per cent week-over-week as of 2 October.

For loads travelling from Florida to other states in the US South, the seven-day average shipment volume was down 19 per cent. For the rest of the United States, the seven-day average was down only 17 per cent, though it is likely this continues to decrease further in the coming days, FourKites wrote.

There is evidence of impacts further upstream in the supply chain as well, as shippers are potentially delaying shipments intended for Florida to escape the impact following the storm in Florida.

During the week of 26 September when Hurricane Ian hit, the number of shipments headed for Florida that were picked up across the rest of the United States was down by around 15 per cent.

Glenn Koepke, Vice President Network Collaboration at FourKites, commented: “Freight that is destined for regions in the path of the hurricane are primarily consumer packaged goods (CPG), food and beverage (F&B), retail and construction supplies.

“We have seen significant slowdown in deliveries from companies in the manufacturing, agricultural and non-essential verticals.”

Koepke added that the slowdown typically takes four to eight weeks to recover.

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