The situation has been caused by a sharp spike in import container volumes, along with a high proportion of late vessel arrivals casued by high winds and port closures.
The weekly import volume for the last two weeks has been over 30% higher than average levels.
This is exacerbated by unusually high levels of empty containers at the port and the impact of the ongoing Covid-19 crisis on resource availability.
As a result, the operational standards at Felixstowe are not currently where we would like them to be.
The Port has noticed these issues and are being pro-active in their approach to minimise the delays as much as possible;
- Increasing VBS booking availability to over 4,300 vehicles per day.
- Opening on Sunday for haulage collection.
- Working with customers to temporarily slow down and reduce the number of empty containers being returned to the port by rail and road, to ensure we do not run out of storage space.
- Recruiting and training over 100 additional front line equipment drivers which had not been possible during lockdown.
- 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.
With this is mind we are seeing an increased number of vessels being delay due to the port rotation changing.
The team at Velta are doing everything within our power to minimise issues that our clients face. We will continue to work hard and keep everyone updated in this challenging time.