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Drayage at the Port of Los Angeles. Select Your Drayage Provider Wisely.

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The efficient movement of goods from ports to their final destinations is a critical link in the supply chain. Drayage serves as the bridge between maritime ports and inland distribution points. The term “drayage” refers to the transportation of goods over a short distance, typically within the range of 50 to 150 miles. In the context of port logistics, drayage involves moving containers from the port to nearby distribution centers, warehouses, or transportation hubs. This intermediate step is essential for connecting the vast network of maritime shipping with the broader supply chain and ensures that goods reach their final destinations promptly.

The Port of Los Angeles, located in San Pedro Bay, 25 miles south of downtown Los Angeles, is the nation’s premier gateway for international commerce and the busiest seaport in the Western Hemisphere. The port encompasses 7,500 acres of land and water along 43 miles of waterfront. Handling diverse commodities from avocado to zinc, the Port of Los Angeles features cargo terminals and warehouse facilities that manage billions of dollars’ worth of cargo each year. In 2022, the Port moved 9.9 million Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEUs), sustaining its top rank among U.S. ports with the second busiest calendar year on record. In 2021, the Port handled a total of 10.7 million TEUs, the busiest calendar year on record in the Port's 115-year history.

The POLA Executive Director Gene Seroka, in his State of the Port address on Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2024, confirmed the big plans for the port’s development and great expectations of an increase in cargo. The port expects cargo volumes for the past year to total more than 8.6 million container units, Seroka said. In addition, there are other grand projects on the rise:

  • A $73 million Pier 400 Corridor expansion is expected to be completed this year.
  • The $195 million Terminal Island Maritime Support Facility will see more roadway, rail and site design work.
  • A $52 million on-dock rail yard expansion at Pier 300 Fenix Marine Services terminal is set to break ground in 2025.

But great expansions also might cause some challenges. Some of the major challenges for the drayage are timely last-mile delivery, congestion management, and regulatory compliance.

Given the high volume of cargo handled by the Port of LA, congestion can be a challenge. Drayage operators face the task of navigating through crowded port areas efficiently. Selecting a reliable drayage operator will minimize disruptions in your supply chain and ensure efficient delivery of goods. Drayage operations are also subject to various regulations, including environmental standards and safety requirements. An experienced and knowledgeable drayage service provider will save you valuable time and resources.

Once containers are transported from the port to distribution centers, goods can be further distributed to local retailers, warehouses, or directly to consumers in the last-mile delivery process. Choose wisely - a trusted drayage provider will ensure prompt and secure delivery, that enhances overall satisfaction with the product and the brand!

Drayage’s efficiency not only prevents bottlenecks at ports but also ensures that the wheels of commerce keep turning smoothly. While drayage is essential for efficient port logistics, it comes with its own set of challenges. To address these challenges, invest in your business relationships and connect with the best providers in the area. 

You have learned that much, but what makes us at Custom Goods a compelling choice as your partner? Trusting us with your cargo means you can rely on over 60 years of experience, expert drayage, over-the-road trucking, and a nationwide network boasting 30+ facilities spanning nearly 7 million square feet, which offers a wide range of value-added warehousing services!

By Natalia Kuvelas