Drayage is the retrieval of shipping containers from ports and hauling them to inland locations such as rail heads, distribution centers, or stores. Ports in the US struggle to position chassis efficiently, and chassis shortages are a key contributor to port congestion. The issue of chassis maintenance and repair is also a sticking point in employer negotiations with longshore labor unions.

US importers shipping through various ports are often concerned about such challenges as congested marine terminals, lengthy truck turn times, equipment shortages, and distribution warehouses stuffed beyond capacity for weeks or longer. Major gateways also experience various degrees of equipment shortages, and delays in the return of empty containers. Some ports in Asia could also risk experiencing a shortage of empty containers.


The reason blockchain has so much appeal to owner-operator truckers is that it puts them on an equal footing with their larger competitors.

News & Analysis

17 Jul 2020
A July 16 story on JOC.com, titled Zim’s new empty container site rankles NY-NJ truckers, incorrectly reported that Zim Integrated Shipping Services would require empty container returns at the Croxton yard beginning July 17.
14 Jul 2020
Truck turn times in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach continue to improve, but truckers seek more timely information from carriers and terminals so they can further reduce visit times.
13 Jul 2020
Roughly 90 percent of carriers in the highly fragmented US drayage sector generate less than $4 million in annual revenue, and these smaller providers could be at risk of bankruptcy due to skyrocketing insurance premiums.
09 Jul 2020
US Payroll Protection Program loans, once forgiven, will give small trucking outfits a chance to invest in much-needed technology, a tax and accounting advisory firm says.
08 Jul 2020
London-based digital cargo insurer Loadsure partners with Chicago-based Transship to more fully automate refrigerated containerized exports.
01 Jul 2020
For drayage operator Mark-It Express Logistics, the purchase of Sava Transportation and Spirit Trucking represent the first steps in a larger consolidation plan.
12 Jun 2020
The addition of Gusgo Transport to its operating subsidiaries gives TFI deeper access to international containerized freight moving between the US and Canada.
20 May 2020
Digitally-oriented freight broker Loadsmart, backed in part by Maersk’s venture fund, has begun offering a product that stitches together drayage, transload, and truckload operations.
14 May 2020
Regulators are expanding the area covered by the short-haul exemption to trucking hours of service rules, and that brings opportunities to drayage and e-commerce delivery carriers.
08 May 2020
With tensions on the rise, groups representing ocean carriers and truck companies are open to meeting to resolve their differences on chassis.
07 May 2020
Brokerage solutions maker Trucker Tools will pull parking data into an app-based platform to aid truck drivers searching for available spaces.
24 Apr 2020
A new international distribution center in Houston blends US trucking and containerized imports as less-than-truckload carrier Averitt reaches deeper into US consumer markets.
06 Apr 2020
California Trucking Association executive told JOC webcast last week that the issue of driver classification will continue to be the focus of legislation at the state level and is becoming even more complex even as the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California is expected to rule on AB5 this summer.
03 Apr 2020
BCOs and drayage truckers need to document unreasonable detention and demurrage charges, but also not contribute to the problem, speakers toldl a JOC.com webcast.
31 Mar 2020
Enforcement of California’s AB5 worker classification legislation as it applies to trucking will remain suspended for now, which means that drayage operators can continue to call upon owner-operators to haul containers at the ports until oral arguments in the case are heard this summer.
09 Mar 2020
CMA CGM has joined the gray pool in Memphis, a win for those advocating for truckers to use any chassis for any container to eliminate chassis splits and other inefficiencies that cost shippers money.
26 Feb 2020
A Southern California drayage software maker has raised more than $10 million to fund development of its marketplace for drivers and shippers, a sign the pace of investment in this once-overlooked freight segment won’t soon slow.
SSA Marine said truckers who participate in free flow drayage in West Coast ports such as Oakland (above) consistently achieve turn times of 15 to 20 minutes, compared with an hour or longer in conventional operations.
20 Feb 2020
Terminal operators, truckers, and BCOs agree that expanding free-flow operations for the delivery of containers at West Coast ports is a win-win situation for all participants, but the complexities of pulling it off in an era of big ships and alliances is limiting its potential.
DCLI to leave Chicago cooperative chassis pool
20 Feb 2020
DirectChassis Link, one of the three largest US chassis providers, will be exiting the Chicago cooperative chassis pool this year, a blow to those who envision a market in which any chassis can be used on any container.
APM Terminals to launch NY-NJ appointment system
03 Feb 2020
APM Terminals Elizabeth has announced it will launch a reservation system in late February, becoming the second of the six terminals at the Port of New York and New Jersey to operate an appointment system.
27 Jan 2020
FlexiVan Leasing has announced a merger with American Intermodal Management, growing its US chassis pool by 12,500 units to 137,500 and acquiring new equipment.
21 Jan 2020
New Jersey’s effort to crack down on what it sees as the misclassification of workers as independent contractors rather than employees continued Monday with the signing of six classification bills.
Port Tampa Bay looks to capitalize on direct Asia connections in 2020
15 Jan 2020
Port Tampa Bay believes 2020 will be a big year with an expansion of its container terminal, three weekly trans-Pacific vessel calls, and a major push to win cargo owners in the Interstate 4 corridor by selling the value of short hauls to maximize hours of service.
15 Jan 2020
As transloading increases at US ports, RoadOne IntermodaLogistics is buying and building transload capacity, starting with Crown Transportation of Savannah, Georgia.
13 Jan 2020
Southern California judge delays decision by possibly two weeks in a key case that challenges the legality of truck driver classification bill known as AB5.
09 Jan 2020
A California judge has sided with Cal Cartage in a lawsuit brought by the State of California, agreeing with a District Court restraining order issued Dec. 31 that AB5 does not apply to trucking because of federal preemption.
09 Jan 2020
AB5-type legislation in New Jersey that truckers say will shrink the drayage fleet at the Port of New York and New Jersey won’t be enacted by the end of the current legislative session, but the sponsor said he’ll push to pass the bill in the next session.
06 Jan 2020
AB5 in California is pushing drayage companies and drivers toward the freight brokerage model, but that involves additional costs and legal challenges.
06 Jan 2020
Truckers at the Port of New York and New Jersey can now plan their schedules based on traffic levels on key roads within the port, as seen in newly available video streams.
31 Dec 2019
The US District Court has issued a last-minute reprieve for the trucking industry looking to block AB5, issuing a temporary restraining order on Dec. 31 to protect the industry until a Jan. 13 hearing.
31 Dec 2019
While drayage operators in California await the fate of legal challenges to AB5, some are shifting to a freight-broker model, and owner-operators are becoming licensed as individual companies.
30 Dec 2019
Going into 2020, chassis providers in the US are hopeful that fleet upgrades over the last two years have made the network more resilient, while also acknowledging that there is still little they can do to absorb sudden, unanticipated spikes in cargo.
24 Dec 2019
The US Federal Maritime Commission has proposed a rule that would see the agency take a more active role in detention and demurrage disputes, but container carriers are laying the groundwork for a potential legal challenge in 2020 should the FMC enact the rule.
23 Dec 2019
New legislation will take effect in California Jan. 1 that would make it much more difficult for truck drivers to retain independent contractor status, but owner operators are stuck in limbo pending a court decision on a legal challenge to the new rules.
17 Dec 2019
Owner-operator truckers face big changes if New Jersey legislation is enacted that would reshape the way the state determines whether a driver is an employee or independent contractor. But stakeholder assessments vary over the impact on the Port of New York and New Jersey.