NSW depot congestion likely for foreseeable future, say hauliers

<p>The New South Wales Road Transport Association has warned road transport customers that below-par service levels will continue in the trucking industry so long as empty container depots remain congested.</p> <p>The RTA said that there are an abnormally large number of empty containers in storage for the time of the year, with shipping lines unable to move them at the same pace as imports are arriving.</p> <p>Waits of between one and three hours to drop empties have been common during April and May, it said.</p> <p>Sydney Ports Corporation monitoring showed depot levels at nearly 80% in recent weeks, but some major depots were over 90%, or effectively full. </p> <p>Last year’s State Budget gave SPC funding to buy the Cooks River rail site, which will ease the flow of empties in the city. But no new commercial storage capacity has been added.</p> <p>"For container carriers, delays lead to less reliability in the transport chain. It means it is more likely that they will be unable to stick to their daily schedule" and more likely that customer expectations will not be met, the RTA said.</p> <p>Sydney volumes reached 106,000 teu last month, bringing cumulative trade growth to 25% over the past two years. </p> <br />