The articles excerpted on this site report on the state of the industry as seen by mainstream media, and do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the officers of the ILWU Coast Longshore Division.

Sanders steps up push for ‘moral economy’

Sen. Bernie Sanders wearing ILWU jacket at rally in Southern California, May 2016

”You divide everyone up, and you know what happens?” Sanders asked. ”The rich get richer, and everyone else gets poorer.” Sen. Bernie Sanders wearing ILWU jacket at rally in Southern California, May 2016

From the Los Angeles Daily News:

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ 30-minute speech before a crowd of about 1,000 mostly union dock workers — members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 13 — rarely mentioned Clinton, but he did take repeated shots at corporate America, Wall Street and the Republican’s presumptive presidential nominee, Donald Trump.

His attacks on Trump zeroed in on the reality television star’s comments that have been labeled as racist and misogynistic.

“You divide everyone up, and you know what happens?” Sanders asked. “The rich get richer, and everyone else gets poorer.”

He also brought up Pope Francis and the need for “moral economy.”

“A moral economy is not an economy where CEOs make tens of millions of dollars a year, ship our jobs abroad and take away health care from their workers,” Sanders said. “That is the type of corporate culture that has got to be fundamentally changed. There is more to life than billionaires making more money.”

Sanders has been buoyed by a recent California field poll that showed him trailing Democratic front-runner Clinton by 2 points.

More at the Los Angeles Daily News


State-ownership not the solution for Portland

From Port Strategy:

The Port of Portland’s executive director has rejected a recent proposal from president of Common Sense for Oregon for the port’s Terminal 6.

Bill Wyatt believes that creating a state-owned authority, Oregon Shipping Authority (OSA), does not solve the problems which currently face the terminal.

Mr Wyatt accepted that restoring service at Terminal 6 still remains a challenge: “We are seeing a carrier industry that is struggling from overcapacity, low freight rates and a significant reshuffling of alliances affecting vessel deployments and routing decisions.”

The proposal from Mr Mannix suggests making longshoreman public employees, but the Port of Portland executive director argued that this would likely not be acceptable to the unions or shipping lines who collectively bargain with the ILWU under the West Coast agreement.

“Public entities like that Port of Portland have not been considered for membership in the Pacific Maritime Association and it is highly unlikely that they ever would be, which means the new entity could not employ longshoremen directly or as state employees.”

Read the rest at Port Strategy


Sen. Bernie Sanders’ San Pedro waterfront rally expected to draw thousands

Bernie Sanders

From the Daily Breeze:

Thousands of union workers will rally Friday on the San Pedro waterfront during a campaign swing by Sen. Bernie Sanders as he continues to barnstorm the state for presidential primary votes.

The outdoor event, sponsored by Harbor Area labor unions, will be held at the Downtown Harbor dock area just north of the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, 84 E. Sixth St., at Harbor Boulevard.

Admission is first-come, first serve. Doors open at 8 a.m.

Among the sponsors are the International Longshore and Warehouse Union International and the ILWU Pensioners, both of which have formally endorsed Sanders, said Middleton who is secretary-treasurer of the Harry Bridges Institute, which also has endorsed him.

Those wanting to attend should arrive no later than 9 a.m. Other speakers also will be featured at the morning rally. Those attending are asked not to bring bags and to limit what they carry to keys, cellphones and other small personal items only.

Weapons, sharp objects, chairs and signs or banners on sticks will not be allowed through the security checkpoint.

Free parking is available at Ports O’ Call Village south of the museum and $2 parking (cash or credit) is available at the Battleship Iowa parking lot to the north of the museum at Harbor Boulevard and First Street.

More at The Daily Breeze


Port of Seattle wants to ready Terminal 5 for big ships

Note: Longshore and Shipping News does not advertise. Any ads in the clip are placed by the broadcasting station.

On Monday, the Port of Seattle released a draft environmental impact statement for a modernization project, and opened about a month’s worth of public comment.

The port proposes dredging by Terminal 5, strengthening the pier and upgrading the power to handle larger cranes.

Public hearings on renovating Terminal 5 are planned June 7 in Georgetown and June 9 in West Seattle.

Click here to find the draft EIS.

Details of the public hearings are below:

Tuesday, June 7
5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Georgetown Campus, South Seattle College
6737 Corson Ave. So., Seattle

Thursday, June 9
5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Alki Masonic Center
4736 40th Ave. SW, Seattle

More at KIRO 7


Bernie Sanders unveils California television ad

Reported in the Los Angeles Times:

Bernie Sanders released a television ad on Tuesday that urges Californians to send a message to establishment Democrats in the state’s June 7 primary.

“What choice do Californians have in this election?” Sanders says in the 30-second ad, over footage of workers and students. “The biggest one of all. You have the power to choose a new direction for the Democratic Party.”

Click on the image below to view the ad on YouTube, or see the LA Times article here.


SOLAS is critical to seafarer and cargo safety

MSC Napoli

In January 2007, the containership MSC Napoli suffered a structural failure and broke up off the coast of the UK. Misdeclared container weights were identified as a factor causing the structural failure.

Excerpts from an opinion piece by Dennis L. Bryant, principal, Bryant’s Maritime Consulting, published in the Journal of Commerce:

It is important for a ship to be stable at the dock. It is absolutely vital for the safety of the ship, crew, and cargo that the ship be stable when underway no matter the conditions at sea.

Shippers have always been required to include a “declared weight” on the manifest for each container, but these often were estimates and sometimes highly inaccurate.

Beginning in 2010, the International Maritime Organization examined the issue. After several years of study, it was formally recommended that shippers be required to verify the gross mass of containers presented for carriage in international commerce. After further vetting, the Safety of Life at Sea, or SOLAS, convention was amended in 2014 to adopt this requirement. At the same time, guidelines for determining the verified gross mass of a container were developed. The requirement is scheduled to enter into effect on July 1, 2016.

In recent months, various shippers and shipper groups have vocally complained about this new obligation. Among other things, it has been asserted that this requirement will impose new costs and place U.S. exports at a competitive disadvantage. It has also been asserted that the requirement is unnecessary as there is no evidence that any ship has been damaged or sunk exclusively due to overweight containers. This latter argument is equivalent to saying that incremental improvements to highway safety are unneeded because they can’t stop all accidents.

Read more of Dennis Bryant’s writings at Bryant’s Maritime Consulting

Source: Journal of Commerce


ILWU to gain auto, break bulk jobs at San Francisco's Pier 80

From an article titled ‘Auto importer to help Pier 80 roar back to life’ in the San Francisco Chronicle:

Pier 80 San Francisco

For the first time in years, San Francisco’s Pier 80 will revert to its intended purpose: a working cargo terminal.

The Port of San Francisco has reached a deal with Pasha Automotive Services, which will use the Pier 80 facility to import as many as 150,000 automobiles a year. It could also serve as an export hub for Tesla Motors, which manufactures its high-end electric cars in Fremont.

John Pasha, senior vice president of Pasha Automotive Services, said while it would take several years to reach full capacity, the terminal could eventually handle 96 ships annually and employ 50 longshoremen. The first ships could start steaming into Pier 80 this fall.

“It’s been several years since we had much work at Pier 80 — we’re really excited to have more work over there,” said Ed Ferris, president of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union President Local 10.

The timing is fortunate for Bay Area longshore workers. In January, Ports America, which runs operations at dozens of U.S. ports, said it would terminate a 50-year lease with the Port of Oakland and cease cargo operations in Oakland’s Outer Harbor Terminal.

“That caused about 100 people to lose steady positions and come back to the hall,” Ferris said. “It’s been a little slow this quarter.”

In addition to automobiles, Pasha will use the pier for cargo pieces that are too large to fit into normal shipping containers.

More at the San Francisco Chronicle


Port of Portland’s container service hits zero

Excerpts from the Lewiston Tribune:

Westwood Shipping [made] its last call on the Port of Portland Saturday. It was the only container carrier that stopped regularly at the Oregon port and carried a fraction of the volume major shippers hauled. The last of those, Hapag-Lloyd, departed a year ago.

Low rates and overcapacity in the container vessel industry, not labor/management conflicts, were the reasons behind Westwood Shipping’s withdrawal, according to Jennifer Sargent Bokaie, a spokeswoman for the International Longshore and Warehouse Union.

“Longshore workers are continuing to work on auto ships, bulk cargo and other terminals at the Port of Portland,” she said in an email.

“Container rates on vessels are at an all-time low,” Lewiston Port Manager David Doeringsfeld said. “It’s good for the shipper and bad for the steamship lines. They’re having to consolidate services where they can to save on costs.”

Read the rest at the Lewiston Tribune


Dredging planned at Port of Astoria

The Daily Astorian reports that the Port of Astoria Commission has voted to focus on developing North Tongue Point, improving dredging, expelling sea lions from the East End Mooring Basin and repairing its docks, fixing crumbling piers and further improving the agency’s finances as priorities for the coming fiscal year and beyond. Commissioners provided several priorities they felt the agency should focus on in the coming year.

“The Port of Astoria is the recipient of everybody’s sediment from upstream,” said Permit and Project Manager Rob Evert, reporting on the Port’s dredging operations over the past year. The port spent more than US$400,000 over the past year dredging more than 130,000 cubic yards of accumulated sediment from around its piers to accommodate ships.

More at Sand and Gravel


Market forces, industry changes end container service in Portland -- for now

From a report titled ‘Port of Portland Loses Last Container Ship Service’ in the Wall Street Journal:

Oregon’s Port of Portland will see its last container ship service this Saturday, when Westwood Shipping Lines makes its final call.

Small and midsize ports like Portland are facing challenges as global ocean carriers have formed alliances and increasingly send goods on supersize ships that only the largest ports can accommodate. Portland’s harbor is only deep enough to handle ships that carry about 6,000-6,500 TEUs—one third the load of the largest vessels calling U.S. ports. Just two years ago, the Port of Portland moved about 130,000 TEUs, full of goods. So far this year, it has moved less than 1,000 TEUs.

According to port officials, the monthly service was no longer financially viable for the carrier. Ocean freight rates have been plummeting this year, making the cost of the 100-mile trip up the Columbia River to Portland’s docks tougher to bear.

Port officials added they still hope to recruit another container cargo carrier to call at Portland.

Read the rest in the Wall Street Journal


Violence against trade unionists remains rampant in Colombia

Violence continues against union members in Colombia

Colombian labor unions said the country’s authorities have failed to enforce worker protections and revealed that they are being threatened.

From Telesur TV:

Colombia has failed to enforce worker protections in a free trade agreement with the United States, U.S. and Colombian labor unions said on Monday.

In a complaint issued by the AFL-CIO along with four Colombian unions, the organized labor groups said threats and acts of violence against trade unionists in Colombia were neither properly investigated nor prosecuted.

For trade union murders, impunity presently stands at 87 percent. For death threats, the most common threat used against Colombian unionists, the rate of impunity comes to a scandalous 99.8 percent, the report noted.

The 69-page document also criticized an initiative proposed by the Obama administration known as the Labor Action Plan (LAP), which was agreed upon in order to enable the passage of the controversial Colombia Free Trade Agreement.

In the LAP’s first five years, some 99 Colombian workers and worker advocates were killed as they tried to exercise their rights. Six workers were kidnapped, and 955 death threats were received, the complaint said.

More at Telesur TV


Port of Oakland announces new app for truckers

FYI from a Port of Oakland news release:

Port of Oakland
Press Releases, Seaport
May 18th, 2016

Oakland, Calif. – May 18, 2016: A groundbreaking mobile phone app developed for the Port of Oakland to aid harbor truckers is now live. The Port said today its DrayQ feature is available at Apple and Google app stores with no charge. The app tells drivers how long they’ll wait to enter marine terminal gates and how long transactions are taking.

The Port said DrayQ will display how long it takes to enter terminal gates. It will also calculate how long drivers must wait to complete transactions. The times will appear on mobile phone screens much like freeway drive-time signboards.

The Port said its new technology could fundamentally change seaport operations in two ways:

For the first time, truckers and dispatchers will have a precise measure of how long a terminal transaction takes. If it’s too long, drivers can plan around slow periods.

Cargo owners and terminal operators will now have accurate data to determine if containerized shipments are being efficiently processed. If they’re not, the data can help pinpoint where operational changes are needed.

DrayQ relies on Bluetooth, GPS and WiFi technology to measure truckers’ progress through the Port. Automated DrayQ readers anonymously track every truck in the Port whose driver carries a cell phone. Leidos officials are at marine terminals today introducing harbor truckers to the app. They said their goal is to have 3,000 drivers download it by June.

Read the full release at the Port of Oakland


Bernie Sanders takes Oregon, looks to California

The ILWU is working to make sure that California’s June 7 primary is a win for Bernie Sanders! Here’s what our endorsed candidate had to say last night after his victory in Oregon:


Oregon’s Democratic primary voters push Bernie Sanders to victory

Bernie Sanders in Oregon

Bernie Sanders prevailed in Oregon, which sends 61 pledged delegates to the Democratic convention this summer. With 75 percent of precincts reporting, Sanders led Clinton, 54.5 percent to 45.5 percent. It’s the first time Sanders has won a primary closed to unaffiliated voters.

From the Huffington Post:

Bernie Sanders won Oregon’s Democratic presidential primary on Tuesday. … Sanders’ campaign has said that neither candidate will arrive at the convention with a majority of pledged delegates and that his campaign could still convince superdelegates siding with Clinton to switch their allegiances. He has argued that he would be the best candidate to take on the GOP’s presumptive nominee, Donald Trump, and that superdelegates would change their minds about Clinton if they paid attention to general election polling showing Sanders performing better against Trump.

The end of the primary is approaching, so Sanders has limited opportunities to make up his delegate deficit. California, New Jersey, North and South Dakota, the District of Columbia, New Mexico and Montana hold the nation’s last Democratic contests in June.

More at the Huffington Post


Port of Hueneme won’t close during construction

The Port of Hueneme will not be shutting down when construction begins later this year on an $8 million effort to deepen the port — a project that will increase the amount of cargo shipped in by 200,000 tons a year, port officials say.

Port CEO Kristin Decas said the commercial port operations have an agreement with the U.S. Navy to use its berths if necessary. “There will be some financial hit to the port, but not to workers. No one will lose their jobs because of the project.”

The deepening effort, set to begin in December, will smooth out the bottom of the man-made port, taking it down to 40 feet from its current average of 35 feet.

More at the Ventura County Star