Disclaimer

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.

Port worker crushed by container at ICTSI in Jakarta identified as Nasrul Nasution

Nasrul Nasution was killed in a worksite accident at the ICTSI terminal in Jakarta, November 2017.

40-year-old Nasrul Nasution was tragically killed in a worksite accident at the ICTSI terminal in Jakarta, Indonesia last week.

Our profound condolences go out to Mr. Nasution’s family, friends and colleagues. An Injury to One is an Injury to All.

Excerpts from an article titled ‘Worker Deaths Leads to Union Call for Full Investigation at Port of Jakarta’:

International unions have castigated the management at the Port of Jakarta after a worker was killed on the job at the International Container Terminal Services Inc (ICTSI) facility. Local unions say a 40-year-old man was fatally crushed when a refrigerated container was dropped onto his truck, crushing the cabin and killing the driver. This is the second workplace fatality at the Port of Jakarta in three weeks.

International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) President Paddy Crumlin said this was a heart-wrenching time for all dockworkers and that this accident could have been avoided if the ICTSI Jakarta terminal was properly run. “Low-paid outsource workers at ICTSI terminals are paid poverty wages and frequently work massive hours just to make ends meet. The link between high rates of outsourcing and bad safety outcomes is well documented.”

The ITF last month issued its own report into ICTSI which it claimed showed a pattern of severe safety deficiencies across the Philippine-based company’s network of terminals. The report particularly highlighted the lack of adequate systems to separate people and machinery, and a failure to safely manage the risks of suspended loads, along with a number of other issues.

Read the rest at the Handy Shipping Guide

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Container ship service returning to Port of Portland in 2018

From Oregon Public Broadcasting:

More than a year and a half after the final ship sailed following a bitter labor dispute at Oregon’s only international container terminal, container ship service is poised to return to the Port of Portland in January.

Starting in January, Hong Kong-based Swire Shipping will start calls at the Port of Portland’s Terminal 6, roughly every 35 days. The route takes goods from Portland to Australia and New Zealand, and then onto China, with a possible stop in South Korea before returning to Portland.

In 2014, some 8,000 containers moved through the Port of Portland, taking agricultural goods from around the Northwest to Asia and European markets.

Read the rest here

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Port of Oakland plan for ex-Army Base takes a step forward

From a Port of Oakland news release:

Port of Oakland commissioners have given initial approval to a landmark deal with CenterPoint Properties for a logistics center at the former base. The tentative agreement caps nearly 15 years of planning for the most-anticipated Port growth project ever. Port officials said today that the agreement includes unprecedented commitments to hire local workers.

The Board of Port Commissioners voted initial approval of the agreement this week. It comes up for final vote Nov. 30. If Commissioners say yes a second time, the deal becomes official in January.

See the rest at the Port of Oakland web site

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Kalama Export dockworkers rally for better benefits

ILWU Local 21 members were joined by longshoremen from West Coast ports at KEX. Photo by JJ Burkey, ILWU Local 21 member

ILWU Local 21 members were joined by longshoremen from West Coast ports at KEX. Photo by JJ Burkey, ILWU Local 21 member

Excerpts from The Daily News:

Wearing orange shirts with slogans calling for “equal benefits,” about 300 longshoremen marched at the Port of Kalama Wednesday to draw attention to stalled labor talks between the Kalama Export Company and International Longshoremen and Warehouse Union Local 21.

Local 21 represents 46 longshoremen at Kalama Export, one of two grain export terminals at the Port of Kalama. Kalama Export is owned by Pacificor, a joint venture between Archer Daniels Midland, Marubeni (aka Gavilon) and Mitsubishi. Pacificor also owns the Columbia Export Terminal in Portland. Pacificor does offer those benefits to its Portland grainhandlers.

“It’s not right that the same employer has one standard for its workers in Portland but another for its workers in Kalama,” ILWU Local 21 President Billy Roberts said in a prepared statement.

“The work is the same, the hazards are the same and the need for family health benefits and retirement security are the same. But the employer has refused, for three years at the negotiating table, to meet the industry standard on benefits. KEX (Kalama Export Company) needs to meet the same standard for its grainhandlers in Kalama as it already does for its grainhandlers in Portland,” Roberts said.

More at The Daily News

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Dockworkers mourn port worker killed at ICTSI terminal in Jakarta

The international dockworkers’ community is in mourning following the death of an Indonesian worker who was killed on the job at the International Container Terminal Services Inc (ICTSI) facility in Jakarta this week.

Local unions say a 40-year-old man was fatally crushed at 22.10 local time when a refrigerated container was dropped onto his truck, crushing the cabin and killing the driver. This is the second workplace fatality at the Port of Jakarta in three weeks.

International Transport Workers’ Federation President Paddy Crumlin said this was a heart-wrenching time for all dockworkers and that this accident could have been avoided if the ICTSI Jakarta terminal was properly run.

“Every worker deserves to come home safely at the end of their shift and our thoughts go out to this man’s family, friends and co-workers,” Crumlin said.

“While we cannot pre-empt the findings of an official inquiry, ICTSI has a demonstrably poor record when it comes to safety in the workplace.

“This incident raises serious questions about ICTSI’s traffic management systems and specifically whether they had adequately separated moving vehicles from suspended loads.

“Given their chequered history, we also need a thorough investigation into whether poor maintenance and equipment failure have played a role in this tragic death of a worker.

“Extreme fatigue will also need to be investigated. Like many workers at ICTSI, this man was employed by an outsource labour supply company called Persada.

“Low-paid outsource workers at ICTSI terminals are paid poverty wages and frequently work massive hours just to make ends meet. The the link between high rates of outsourcing and bad safety outcomes is well documented.”

The ITF last month launched a global report into ICTSI which showed a pattern of severe safety deficiencies across the Philippine-based company’s network of terminals.

The report particularly highlighted the lack of adequate systems to separate people and machinery, and a failure to safely manage the risks of suspended loads, along with a number of other issues.

“The ITF, and our union affiliates, have observed an emerging pattern of labour violations in the ICTSI network: a failure to respect the right to freedom of association; poor safety standards; and illegal outsourcing of labour,” the report says.

“Many of these violations are in breach of domestic law in the countries where ITCSI operates and contravene international labour conventions.

“They also contravene ICTSI’s own policies and statements, and call into question the company’s ability to effectively manage their global business and ensure the same standards and performance across all of their terminals.”

Crumlin said: “ICTSI has been the target of international condemnation in recent months over the company’s sloppy management, poor safety standards, and a distinct lack of compliance with local laws and international labour conventions.

“This month the Government of Papua New Guinea has been the target of global protests calling on the government to review the decision to award port operations in Lae and Port Moresby to ICTSI.

“After today’s tragedy, these protests are set to continue until ICTSI changes its ways and begins to engage with unions and their workforce to ensure fair wages and safety on the job for all of their dockworkers around the globe.”
For more details, please contact

Source: ITF

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ILWU members from West Coast ports travel to support Kalama Export workers

ILWU members from West Coast ports from Seattle to Los Angeles convened on Nov. 8, 2017, to support workers at Kalama Export Company who are receiving substandard benefits while all other eight Northwest grain export elevators meet the industry standard. Photo by ILWU Local 21 longshoreman J.J. Burkey

ILWU members from West Coast ports from Seattle to Los Angeles convened on Nov. 8, 2017, to support workers at Kalama Export Company who are receiving substandard benefits while all other eight Northwest grain export elevators meet the industry standard. Photo by ILWU Local 21 longshoreman J.J. Burkey

Kalama Export is the only grain export terminal in the Northwest that does not provide ILWU-PMA pension and welfare benefits to its workers, but KEX’ parent company provides them to Columbia Export workers 50 miles south

KALAMA, WA (NOVEMBER 8, 2017) – In a show of solidarity with workers at Kalama Export Company (KEX), members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) traveled from several West Coast ports to show support for local Longshore workers who are three years into negotiations for a new contract with their employer. The ILWU longshore workers traveled from as far away as Tacoma and Seattle to the north, and San Francisco, Oakland, Los Angelesand Long Beach to the south to show their support.

Wearing orange shirts that read, “ILWU Grainhandlers United for Equal Benefits for KEX Workers,” elected union leaders from the ILWU International Headquarters and other West Coast ports urged Kalama Export to meet the industry standard and provide the same ILWU-PMA pension and welfare benefits that all other grain export terminals have been providing to their grainhandlers for decades – a benefit that KEX’s owner already provides to its grainhandlers at the Port of Portland, OR.

KEX at the Port of Kalama, WA, is owned by the same joint venture that owns Columbia Export Terminal (CET) 50 miles upriver in Portland, OR:
● 60.6% Japan-based Marubeni (dba Gavilon)
● 32.2% US-based Archer Daniels Midland
● 7.2% Japan-based Mitsubishi
Together these three companies call themselves Pacificor. This employer provides ILWU-PMA benefits for its grainhandlers in Portland, but not those in Kalama.

“It’s not right that the same employer has one standard for its workers in Portland but another for its workers in Kalama,” said ILWU Local 21 President Billy Roberts. “The work is the same, the hazards are the same, and the need for family health benefits and retirement security are the same. But the employer has refused, for three years at the negotiating table, to meet the industry standard on benefits. KEX needs to meet the same standard for its grainhandlers in Kalama as it already does for its grainhandlers in Portland.”

Of the nine grain export terminals in the Northwest, every one provides ILWU-PMA pension and welfare benefits to their grainhandlers, except for KEX in Kalama. The ones who do: Columbia Export Terminal (CET) in Portland, Export Grain Terminal (EGT) in Longview, Louis Dreyfus Commodities (LDC) in Portland, Louis Dreyfus Commodities (LDC) in Seattle, TEMCO in Portland, TEMCO in Kalama, TEMCO in Tacoma, and United Grain Company (UGC) in Vancouver, WA.

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Container record broken at Port of Los Angeles

From Global Trade Magazine:

Maersk Line has claimed it set a record when the Maersk Evora loaded and unloaded 24,846 TEUs. The carriers says that’s a new world record for a single vessel port call.

The international trade landmark took place at APM Terminals (APMT), Pier 400 in the Port of Los Angeles during the week of October 18, 2017.

Maersk’s 13,492 TEU container vessel arrived at the APMT terminal fully loaded and with containers stacked nine high above deck, a first for any US port, according to the port of LA. APMT used its newly raised cranes, the tallest in North America, to load and unload the vessel.

More at Global Trade Magazine

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Judge sides with developers of Longview coal terminal

From the Associated Press:

A Washington state judge on Friday handed a victory to the developers of a massive proposed coal-export terminal on the Columbia River, saying the state acted arbitrarily when it blocked a sublease sought for the project.

The decision, by Cowlitz County Superior Court Judge Stephen Warning, followed a series of recent setbacks for Millennium Bulk Terminals, including the state Ecology Department’s decision to deny it a needed water-quality permit.

The $680 million terminal, which would ship coal from Montana, Wyoming and other states to Asia, could boost U.S. coal exports by 40 percent. The ruling overturned a decision made by outgoing Public Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark early this year. Goldmark had denied permission for the project to use docks at a former aluminum smelter, saying Millennium hadn’t provided enough information about its finances, among other concerns.

Nevertheless, the terminal has a long ways to go before it gets a green light.

Read the rest at the San Francisco Chronicle

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South Korea completes its first Arctic voyage via Northern Sea Route

Excerpts from Port Technology:

Hyundai Glovis, a South Korean shipping liner, has completed the country’s first voyage to transport cargo between Asia and Europe by the Arctic Sea after arriving at Sapo Quay of Gwangyang Port in South Korea on October 21, 2017.

South Korea’s Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said the pilot operation will “serve as a lesson” for other shipping companies in setting up strategies in the Arctic area.

The South Korean government has plans to support the South Korean shipping companies so that they can successfully tap into the Northern Sea Route.

In August 2017, China transported steel products on bulk vessel weighing in at 19,000 tons in a pilot operation through the NSR.

More at Port Technology

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House reps: Shore up security funding at LA, Long Beach ports

Excerpts from the LA Daily News:

While praising efforts to protect the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports from terrorist and cyber attacks, members of Congress aired concerns Monday about threats to public safety and the economy if federal funding for maritime security programs isn’t raised to meet new threats.

At a rare on-site hearing of the House Homeland Security Committee at the Port of L.A., members of the panel and other Southern California representatives sounded generally pleased with what they heard. Officials from the two local ports, the Coast Guard, Customs and Border Protection and the longshore union testified about what has been done to protect the facilities in the wake of two security scares earlier this year.

Rep. Nanette Barragan, D-Carson, whose district includes the Port of L.A., asked if CBP staffing was sufficient.

No, said Ray Familathe, vice president of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, contending that having security scans unavailable on weekends leaves workers unable to process cargo.

More at the LA Daily News

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Port of Longview candidate wants to 'loosen port’s ties to the ILWU' and open port to non-union labor

‘That worked well with EGT didn’t it?’ said Averett, referring to the 2011 labor unrest when the ILWU clashed with EGT over jurisdiction.

Excerpts from an article titled ‘Labor, fossil fuels and taxes take center stage in port race’ in The Daily News:

Port Commissioner Doug Averett is defending his seat against Kent Preston, who has twice run unsuccessfully for the role.

while Preston is critical of the port’s labor agreement with the longshoremen’s union, Averett sees it as vital to the port’s operations.

Preston wants to loosen the port’s ties to the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and make it easier for other unions or contracted non-union labor to perform typical longshoremen tasks at the port.

“That worked well with EGT didn’t it?” said Averett, referring to the 2011 labor unrest when the ILWU clashed with EGT over jurisdiction. “(Preston) acts like he doesn’t understand the waterfront. The longshoremen have jurisdiction for cargo activity at public ports coastwide. … If he believes he can somehow (change that), he’s sadly mistaken.”

More at The Daily News

ILWU International President Robert McEllrath was among the hundreds of union members who were arrested, pepper sprayed, clubbed, and subjected to abuse for standing up for good jobs at the EGT terminal in Longview, WA, in 2011 and 2012. EGT reached a collective bargaining agreement with the ILWU in 2012, and another in 2017. Photo by Dawn Des Brisay, ILWU Local 40.

ILWU International President Robert McEllrath was among the hundreds of union members who were arrested, pepper sprayed, clubbed, and subjected to abuse for standing up for good jobs at the EGT terminal in Longview, WA, in 2011 and 2012. EGT reached a collective bargaining agreement with the ILWU in 2012, and another in 2017. Photo by Dawn Des Brisay, ILWU Local 40.

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Disney cruise line returns to all Mexican ports

The Disney Cruise Line has said they will be expanding their San Diego season by offering a variety of cruises to Mexico ports in 2019.

The company says that from March to May of 2019, they will again be offering Mexico cruises that will dock in popular ports such as Ensenada, Cabo San Lucas, Puerto Vallarta and Mazatlán. The Mexico cruises will depart from the port of San Diego.

Cruises from San Diego to Mexico began to decline several years ago, which is when Carnival Cruise Lines discontinued its year-round ships to Mexico’s Baja California coast.

More at Riviera Maya News

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Anti-coal activists dressed as zombies in protest of Oakland’s controversial coal development

Photo by Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group

From the East Bay Times:

Michael Kaufman’s Halloween costume this year had a political message to it.

“I’m a no coal in Oakland zombie,” he said, his face covered in dust-colored makeup. “This is a coal-pocalypse.”

Kaufman is a member of the No Coal in Oakland group, hatched to protest developer Phil Tagami’s plans to transport coal through the city to a terminal he’s building on the former Oakland Army Base. Kaufman and about 100 other zombies, from school children to union members, gathered on the eve of Halloween for a “Zombie March on Coal” to the developer’s home. [Note: ILWU Local 10 also opposes the export of coal at this site.]

More at the East Bay Times

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Port of Everett to seek construction bids for South Terminal project

From Progressive Railroading:

The Port of Everett Commission in Washington has authorized its staff to solicit construction bids for the $36 million South Terminal modernization project.

The project, combined with the double rail siding now under construction, will ensure the port will be able to accommodate the next generation of over-dimensional cargo, including aerospace parts, port officials said in a press release.

Upon completion, the dock will be able to accommodate two, 100-foot gauge rail-mounted container cranes and provide the vaults for shore power. The bid package is expected to be issued late next month.

More at Progressive Railroading

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Commonwealth Club building preserves ILWU history

Honoring longshore history: Bay Area Pensioner President Lawrence Thibeaux and ILWU International Secretary-Treasurer Willie Adams in front of the plaque commemorating the 1934 Waterfront Strike outside of the Commonwealth Club’s new headquarters.

Excerpts from The Dispatcher:

The story begins almost ten years ago when the Commonwealth Club – America’s oldest public affairs forum – began searching for a site to build their new headquarters in San Francisco. They discovered a long-abandoned property with an old collapsed office building facing the Embarcadero waterfront in front and Steuart Street in back. They soon realized this run-down property served as the office for longshore workers in Local 38-79 of the International Longshoremen’s Association between 1933-1935 when they struggled to build a union that eventually became today’s ILWU.

“Other developers might have just demolished the old building and ignored the history, but the Commonwealth Club took it seriously and worked with us,” said ILWU International Secretary-Treasurer Willie Adams. He explained that ILWU officers were contacted early by the Commonwealth Club and were invited to help preserve the building’s unique history. The International officers assembled a committee to assist with historical documentation for the site, consisting of ILWU staffer Robin Walker, who serves as the ILWU’s Librarian, Archivist and Education Director; ILWU historian Harvey Schwartz; and Bay Area pensioner John Fisher. The effort resulted in a productive collaboration that lasted years as the project unfolded.

Read the full article at ILWU.org

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