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Rail News: Intermodal

April port volumes: Way up in Long Beach and Georgia, way down in L.A.

Last week, the Port of Long Beach, Calif., reported that its import and export container volumes both increased by double digits in April.

Imports climbed 13.5 percent to 264,337 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) while exports jumped 14.5 percent to 137,864 TEUs compared with April 2012 volumes. Empty container volume rose 8.1 percent to 117,263 TEUs.

Total cargo volume in April increased 12.5 percent to 519,464 TEUs, "continuing a trend of steadily increasing activity" at the port's docks, port officials said in a volume summary.

At the Port of Los Angeles, April volume totaled 640,330 TEUs, down 9.5 percent year over year.

Imports declined 10.4 percent to 326,781 TEUs, exports fell 14.3 percent to 160,130 TEUs, total loaded container volume dipped 11.7 percent to 486,910 TEUs and total empty container volume decreased 1.5 percent to 153,420 TEUs.

Meanwhile, the Georgia Ports Authority's (GPA) two ports in April handled 2.4 million tons of cargo, up 4.7 percent compared with April 2012 and a new monthly record.

Volume was boosted by a strong performance from containers, bulk materials and roll-on/roll-off cargo, GPA officials said in a press release. Container volume rose 4 percent year over year to 258,951 20-foot equivalent units.

"April container volume was 11.3 percent higher than March. Exports remain dominant, representing 54 percent of loaded volume," GPA officials said.

Auto and machinery units reached 57,709, the third-highest monthly total for roll-on, roll-off cargo. Since July 1, GPA ports in Brunswick and Savannah have handled 526,348 units, a 14.1 percent increase versus the previous fiscal year, authority officials said.

"Our streamlined service on-port, combined with better connections to the hinterlands by road and rail, make our deepwater ports the obvious choice for global trade," said GPA Chairman Robert Jepson.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 5/21/2013