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Thread: Where to Park Container Ships

  1. #1
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    Default Where to Park Container Ships

    We spent a couple of days on the boat this week.

    Holmes Harbor is a long indent on Whidbey Island. No industries, no cities, and as of this week two container ships at least 950 feet long:

    Container ships 2.jpg


    There's another anchored in Port Gardner right off Everett

    Ship Port Gardner.jpg

    From what I have read there are container ships up and down the west coast of the US waiting to unload.
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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    The last couple of years they have been parking next to Blake Island. They seem so out of scale in such a small bay.

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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    I hope to get to Blake Island in the next few weeks. Never thought I would see a container ship anchored down there.

    The people in Holmes Harbor are complaining because the ships run generators night and day.
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    There are at least two anchored at Blake Island right now, one is the 1150’ Anna Maersk. The other is 1145’.

    DEBFF332-ACBD-4736-8B49-BED8DB0FD822.jpg

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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    So what is the holdup? Or are there not enough facilities? Or is it Covid?

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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    Quote Originally Posted by skuthorp View Post
    So what is the holdup? Or are there not enough facilities? Or is it Covid?
    Just so, especially as two of them are fully loaded.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  7. #7
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    What a beautiful sight!

    Ships earning good money and being taken out of the supply side of the supply and demand equation. And now the same thing is happening in China because of Covid19 scares.

    Bliss!

    Long may it continue!

    As it probably will, unless you can persuade your terminal staff to work a little faster.. but they are more interest in striking for more money now that they have the whip hand.
    Last edited by Andrew Craig-Bennett; 06-12-2021 at 05:13 AM.
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    So Andrew, why are the ships just sitting? It is a US and China phenomenon or world wide? Covid or other factors? I read somewhere that the railroads were to blame in North America.
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  9. #9
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    It’s almost everywhere. The reason is port congestion.
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    I notice that the ships at Blake Island don’t usually sit for too long, just a day or two. I assume they are waiting for dock space.

    An interesting problem at the Seattle docks is that the docks and the railroad yards are bisected by highway 99, which means the containers are pulled from the ship, loaded onto trucks, then driven about six blocks through an underpass to the rail yard and then loaded onto the rail cars. I’ve been told that any simple solution that eliminates the trucks can not get past the unions.

  11. #11
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    Default Where to Park Container Ships

    Quote Originally Posted by ron ll View Post
    I notice that the ships at Blake Island don’t usually sit for too long, just a day or two. I assume they are waiting for dock space.

    An interesting problem at the Seattle docks is that the docks and the railroad yards are bisected by highway 99, which means the containers are pulled from the ship, loaded onto trucks, then driven about six blocks through an underpass to the rail yard and then loaded onto the rail cars. I’ve been told that any simple solution that eliminates the trucks can not get past the unions.

    Yup. When we built the tunnel, we should have extended it all the way down to the West Seattle Freeway, if not down to Nevada Street, south of Terminal 108.

    That would have allowed the extension of tracks over to the container port - the tracks are currently on the east side of SR 99. Containers have to be offloaded on to truck, and lightered over to the rail yards and loaded on to the rail cars.

    Consequently, much traffic goes to Tacoma instead.

    Holistic thinking is not a strong suit for Seattle's government.

    But geography is still a problem, because to serve the terminals on Harbor Island and on the west side of the Duwamish, you'd need to bridge not 1, but 2 waterways... and since ships need to be moving in and out of there...


    [the current SR 99 tunnel ends near the north end of Terminal 48]


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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    We've had 3 massive ships, two container ships, and a bulk carrier, anchored off of Finlayson Point for the last week.

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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    The explanation - which I owe to my friends here - for my unusual reticence on one of my favourite subjects is that last week I was well paid by a very well known American Bank to explain it to them. Which I did, over an hour, with diagrams and graphs.

    I think it would be wrong of me to repeat something, here, that has been paid for in another place.
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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    A brief summary, perhaps?

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    Did your earlier post imply that the ship owners make money during these delays? Do they get paid per day, moving or not?

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    In my industry, there are ground staff shortages at a handful of airports. The job market is hot. People are moving on. Maybe some longshoremen have moved on. How hard did Covid hit the docks? Maybe a bunch of them are disabled or dead. Maybe it’s a bunch of different things. All I know for sure is it’s happening everywhere.
    Last edited by CK 17; 06-12-2021 at 05:41 PM.
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  17. #17
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    It's a time of change. Big events, like the Black Death, the plagues and WW1 changed society and the labour market. This pandemic is no different. See people having been out of their offices working at home are actively deciding not to go back. And are moving home out of the cities. They are buying local, demanding local, and spending money once used for travel for cars (if they can get one) Caravans, etc. One person we know works from his caravan, parked at anywhere he fancies at the time. Comes to town once a month or so.
    I was going to start a thread on the subject.

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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    I’m trying to replace the railing on my deck. It’s made in Michigan. They manufacture 18 colors. Only 3 are available. The factory is running at 50% still.
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  19. #19
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    Headed into Elliot Bay right now. New container cranes.
    (Stupid wide angle camera phone again.)
    5698766D-7CC2-4285-800F-A4DEB3D11EE3.jpeg

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    Four ships in Homes Harbor last week. They all left, but now two new ones are parked there.
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    So if I find out which one has my new batteries in it, can I just pull along side and pick them up?

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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    Quote Originally Posted by Corvida View Post
    So if I find out which one has my new batteries in it, can I just pull along side and pick them up?
    I think they are in the Ever Given.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    Quote Originally Posted by ron ll View Post
    Headed into Elliot Bay right now. New container cranes.
    (Stupid wide angle camera phone again.)
    5698766D-7CC2-4285-800F-A4DEB3D11EE3.jpeg
    Yes. One of ZPMC’s crane delivery ships; they are modified retired tankers. Zenhua Port Machinery Company perform a turnkey operation - they ship the new cranes in, pre-assembled, on their own ships, along with the workers who will assemble and erect them, living in (of course!) containers on the docks for the time needed to assemble and erect the cranes and test them, and they will remove the old cranes, refit them and sell them to ports in smaller and poorer places.
    Last edited by Andrew Craig-Bennett; 06-14-2021 at 03:09 AM.
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  24. #24
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    That's the problem with Just in time delivery all round the world. One hiccup and it all goes pear shaped.. The Evergiven and Covid hold up the container for a day.. and that just snowballs on everywhere. With the containers stuck on the ships, The next booked load for the container is parked up somewhere.. that holds up another delivery .. another.. etc..
    Just an amateur bodging away..

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    rich people on the hill complaining about generators....heh heh
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  26. #26
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    Quote Originally Posted by The Q View Post
    That's the problem with Just in time delivery all round the world. One hiccup and it all goes pear shaped.. The Evergiven and Covid hold up the container for a day.. and that just snowballs on everywhere. With the containers stuck on the ships, The next booked load for the container is parked up somewhere.. that holds up another delivery .. another.. etc..
    Yes. The delightful (for me) snowball effects of congestion.

    It is a truism of shipping economics that demand for the carriage of goods by sea is not price sensitive. Hence the Ancient Greek shipowning expression “years of fat cows and years of thin cows”.

    Because the years of thin cows, during which we carry the world’s goods for the cost of the fuel and the port costs, and if we are lucky some small contribution to crew wages, luboil, paint, spares, stores and insurance, but never a penny towards capital costs, are more numerous than the years of fat cows, we need the fat cows to be quite plump, when they do come along. We had four years of fat cows from 2004 to 2008, and since then the cows have had their ribs sticking out, to the point that some container ships built around 2010 were scrapped at the ages of seven and eight, so we need some fat cows now.

    It costs between six and ten thousand dollars a day to run a containership, plus the fuel and the port costs.
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  27. #27
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    Default Re: Where to Park Container Ships

    ..about what a few trips to a dentist cost in the states in a few hours
    or what Bezos makes every 5 seconds

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