US Supply Chain Crisis Intensifies: Truck Driver Shortage and Port Strikes

The United States is grappling with a deepening supply chain crisis, as reported by the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade Zhejiang Provincial Committee (CCPIT Zhejiang). The situation has been exacerbated by the banning of nearly 130,000 truck drivers due to “drug driving” and a fresh wave of strikes at major West Coast ports.

In the first quarter of this year, a significant number of truck drivers who tested positive for marijuana did not participate in the return-to-work program, leading to a persistent shortage of drivers in the US trucking industry. This shortage is having a ripple effect on the supply chain, with supermarket shelves bearing the brunt of the impact.

The situation is further complicated by labor disputes at major West Coast ports. A new round of strikes by dockworkers has disrupted cargo operations, with some of the busiest trade gateways in the US experiencing operational difficulties.

The Pacific Maritime Association (PMA), representing West Coast port operators, reported coordinated disruptive strike actions by dockworkers, causing significant disruptions or complete stoppages at major container port terminals from Los Angeles and Long Beach to Seattle.

The trucking industry, which transports nearly 75% of goods and virtually all products sold in grocery stores in the US economy daily, is struggling to address a historic shortage of 80,000 drivers. The American Trucking Associations (ATA) estimates that the driver shortage could reach 160,000 by 2030.

The supply chain crisis in the US is a complex issue involving labor disputes, drug use among truck drivers, and a shortage of truck drivers. As the situation continues to evolve, businesses and consumers alike are feeling the impact.

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