August 31, 2017

Damage from Hurricane Harvey Causes Transportation Delays

Hurricane Harvey, which has devastated large areas of Texas and other areas of the country, has temporarily halted the delivery of goods into that market. Additionally, outbound shipping lanes have been shut down and there is a lack of adequate equipment to meet customer commitments.

As the region still copes with the damage caused by the storm, we encourage you to be patient if your capacity has been affected. To keep customers abreast of the status of shipments, C. H. Robinson, Western Growers’ Transportation Program partner, has provided the following insights about transportation delays caused by the storm:

  • Houston houses a significant amount of industry geared to servicing the Southwestern United States. Outbound shipping has ground to a halt due to standing water.
  • Transportation providers serving that market are now out of balance as their flow of freight IN and OUT of that market is cut off. Trucks are not able to effectively reposition themselves to continue to meet customer demand.
  • Manufacturers and distributors, when necessary and able, are changing their origin points to alternate plants/distribution centers to continue to serve the Southwestern United States. This is changing the flow of goods and trucks into/out of several markets, altering the existing balance of supply and demand.
  • Storm relief is being sent into the area from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)-designated points. FEMA sets the market for transactional transportation in these lanes, but this also impacts the transactional market rates to all destinations from those origins.
  • The impact of Hurricane Harvey on deliveries will linger long after the storm ends. It could be weeks before the influx of supplies inbound to Houston slows down; infrastructure allows trucks to get in and out of the area efficiently; and capacity repositions and becomes balanced back in the markets where they originate. Due to rapidly changing rates and capacity, impacts could occur daily or multiple times per day.

For more information about the Hurricane Harvey truckload transportation impact, click here. For questions, contact Lauren Soares-Singh, Manager – Account Management, West Region at C.H. Robinson at (831) 333 – 5803.