Translogistics Blog

Suez Canal is Finally Reopened As Grounded Container Ship has Been Successfully Moved After Nearly a Week

March 30, 2021

Written By: Peter Rio

TLI's Weekly State of Transportation Update

Week of March 29, 2021


Last week was certainly memorable in the world of supply chain, as the Ever Given container ship became lodged in the Suez Canal, blocking the worlds' second busiest trade route for almost a week in a time where ocean shipping was already extremely backed up.


LTL Weekly Summary:

LTL service levels continue to frustrate many shippers, as missed pickups and late deliveries continue to become normal occurrences regardless of the trucking company. Current market outlooks do not suggest any end is in sight for these poor service levels, as carriers attempt to keep up with record levels of demand and a challenged workforce due to COVID-19. Various embargos are still in place this week from multiple carriers, where their terminals are so backlogged with freight they cannot accept any new shipments.

LTL Carriers continue to focus on improving yields by raising rates, specifically on less desirable freight such as overlength and home deliveries. Multiple carriers have even temporarily halted bringing on new business, as their networks simply cannot handle any more shipments with their current capacity constraints.


Truckload & Intermodal Weekly Summary:

With end of month this week, rates continue to climb especially on any last-minute truckload needs. Many markets are experiencing heightened rates completely obscene to anything seen in recent years. Carriers are often planning out and assigning their trucks to loads a week in advance, as the demand for their services is extremely strong. Shippers who can properly plan their truckloads in advance have the best chance of securing a market competitive freight rate.

In general, on-time delivery levels for truckloads have remained consistent once a carrier is assigned to a load and successfully makes the pickup. Intermodal service levels however continue to struggle, as drayage capacity for both pickups and deliveries is extremely tight. 


International Weekly Summary:

The almost weeklong blockage of the Suez Canal made national news and only worsened an already decimated ocean freight market. Many experts predict this will drive up rates even further to new record high levels, as carriers have only become more behind with their bookings and deliveries. The ripple affect of last weeks events will be felt for months within the global supply chain, as by the time it was cleared a total of 367 vessels were sitting waiting to pass through the canal while others completely diverted the area. These diversions lengthened their trips by taking the long way around, putting deliveries and port arrivals severely behind schedule.

Record high air freight rates continue to be the only solution for organizations who desperately need imported materials to feed their production lines. Goods of all types are being air freighted to avoid ocean delays and extended transit times, from major appliances to home goods, often at per shipment rates upwards of $100,000.


TLI highly suggests that on all shipments you provide our team with the “Must Arrive by Date” (MABD) as to when you need the product delivered, which will help us select the proper routing at the best possible freight rate.

Please contact your Translogistics team at 610-280-3210 for any further questions. 

*article written by Peter Rio, Director of Logistics, Translogistics. Any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out!


Translogistics' Industry Chart of the Week

Suez Canal Blockage Infographic


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