Maritime Association reported Saturday, the International Longshore
and Warehouse Union had resumed work actions against Stevedoring
Services of America, slowing down a terminal in Tacoma and vandalizing
a break-bulk facility in Portland, OR.
in San Francisco contacted officials at ILWU's international headquarters,
who said they were unaware of the work actions, and would investigate.
work action took place at a specialized roll-on, roll-off operation
at Sea Star Stevedoring, a subsidiary of SSA. At this facility,
truck chassis with containers are driven on and off the ship by
ILWU labor using a UTR vehicle. This ship calls on this terminal
two to three times a week, and moves goods between Tacoma, WA,
and Anchorage, AK. As part of its complement of labor, SSA ordered
36 drivers to drive the UTR vehicles.
dispatched 14 of the 36 drivers requested by SSA. Most of the
union members who did show up had little familiarity with the
ship operation. As is the case week in and week out, SSA expected
to complete operations on the vessel by 2:30 a.m. The drivers
moved the goods very slowly. The union also raised safety issues
related to construction at the site that has been ongoing for
several weeks. There was no change to the work site.
As a result
of the ILWU slowdown and failure to dispatch adequate numbers
of drivers, SSA had to order additional workers for the graveyard
shift. The slowdown continued, requiring SSA to place a new order
for workers for the morning shift. The ship, which normally sails
at 2:30 a.m., departed Tacoma at noon Sept. 21, nearly 10 hours
behind schedule. The slowdown doubled the normal amount of time
it takes to work the vessel. The ILWU action also caused a doubling
of the labor cost to work the vessel.
SSA operates a break-bulk operation at Terminal 2. As a result
of poor productivity by the night crews the previous night, SSA
determined Friday night the vessel in port would not be worked
by those crews. When members of the ILWU showed up, SSA sent them
home. In this case, the workers received four hours of pay rather
than the full amount for an eight-hour shift.
One of the
night crane operators, without authorization, hoisted a load of
steel rail that had already been hooked up on the day shift, and
landed it on a rail car and catwalk, causing damage to the cat
walk and blocking the rail line.
is damaged and will need to be replaced. The steel rail will need
to be reassembled and offloaded to a truck.