This Detention and Demurrage claim filed by a carrier against Hapag-Lloyd could be interesting to watch. All this activity takes place at the Port of Long Beach and nearby.
For one thing, the claim involves reefer containers, usually overweight, which require special triple-axle chassis to handle. It also involves breaking down the containers and restuffing them into domestic-style reefers for inland transit. The drayage firm, OAE, finds that they are often charged detention even if they can return the empties within 2 days.
From a supply chain perspective, OAE is clearly providing an important service; they are moving containers from the yard, and are quickly returning them to the carrier for reuse. Both of these are aids to reduce congestion. They also are aids to the shippers, getting cargo further along its route. And there is a recognized need for reefer containers, perhaps even more than for general merchandise containers.
So it would seem that Hapag-Lloyd might be prepared to look the other way regarding D&D charges, except when something goes wrong, such as a lost container or something. Other issues that can occur include a lack of gate appointments for return. With the congestion at Long Beach we see now, gate appointments could be in short supply. To what extent is that the fault of Hapag-Lloyd? Do they have an obligation to use a terminal that can accept the containers they are sending through it?
By Nick Savvides 10/01/2022FMC probe into D&D claim against Hapag-Lloyd could set industry precedent – The Loadstar