The industry groups express their disappointments on worsening delays and inefficiencies especially at the Southern California ports, which the associations say are knotting an already constricted supply chain and raising costs for many furniture importers, manufacturers and retailers.

Therefore, as an immediate and current solution, the letter asks the FMC to suspend detention and demurrage charges on containers and chassis at the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports.

The industry groups explain that these charges pile up due to the policies and practices beyond their control. Demurrage charges apply when an inbound container remains within a terminal beyond a set period of time while detention charges are for containers not returned to the terminal or depot on time. Importers, exporters, ocean intermediaries and businesses all along the supply chain incur these expenses which the associations say they cannot control and which are ultimately being passed on to the U.S. consumer.

Consequently, the groups ask the unloading of the trucks and while still at the terminals reusing the rig to receive an inbound container.

Despite efforts by the shipping and trucking industry to promote more dual-transactions to allow chassis to be recycled during the pick-up and drop-off of containers, the ocean carriers have refused to provide advanced notification of empty receiving locations to allow truckers and marine terminals to partner on increasing dual-transactions throughout the port complex,

... the letter notes.

Following the letter, the FMC announced that it will investigate the matter and the current situation at the ports.