Overloading Container Ship in Baltimore Bridge Collapse Accident and Poor Terminal Utilisation Identified

[ABS News Service/30.03.2024]

The Administration is continuing to assess supply chain disruptions expected from this week's collapse of Baltimore's Francis Scott Key Bridge.

The remains of the collapsed bridge and the cargo ship that struck the bridge are blocking the flow of vessel traffic into and out of the Port of Baltimore a major US port.

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg convened a meeting yesterday of ports, labor groups and industry partners to discuss how to mitigate current and future supply chain disruptions.

Yesterday's meeting followed a meeting of the Administration's Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force.

DOT continues to communicate with port, labor, and industry partners to advance collaboration at all levels borne out of the lessons learned during COVID-driven disruptions including monitoring container volume shifts and increased terminal utilization to better anticipate the movement of goods and capacity needs through DOT's supply chain data-sharing partnership FLOW.

The Port of Baltimore is one of the nation's largest shipping hubs and the number one port for the import and export of automobiles, and the Francis Scott Key Bridge is critical to travel in the Northeast Corridor, according to DOT.

Secretary Buttigieg emphasized that the clearing of debris and reopening of the channel around the Port of Baltimore is a top priority for the Administration, led by the US Coast Guard and the Army Corps of Engineers.

National Economic Advisor Lael Brainard attended the meeting and gave a readout of the Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force's analysis of sectors impacted by being unable to access the port.

The Administration is bringing "the full capacity of all the agencies in the federal government to make sure that we're helping ocean carriers, port leaders, railroads, shippers, and unions to all come together to assess potential supply chain impacts and then work together to address them," Ms. Brainard said.