The Port of Los Angeles announced Thursday that last month it processed 902,644 20-foot equivalent units, and cargo volume this year has been 22% higher than at this time in 2020.

Despite the overall increase, the port processed 8% less cargo last month than in October 2020, the busiest October on record.

“Amid the array of challenges facing the supply chain, we continue to deliver more cargo than ever,” said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka. “The National Retail Federation is forecasting a record holiday season as many outlets such as Walmart, Target and Home Depot report strong sales.

“In recent weeks, clearing our docks of imports and empties has been a top priority. As a result, we’ve seen a marked improvement of fluidity on our marine terminals, which allows more vessels to be processed.”

The San Pedro Port Complex has experienced a backlog of container vessels in recent weeks, prompting involvement from the state and the White House to attempt to mitigate the supply chain disruptions.

Seroka said that since Oct. 24, there’s been a 31% drop in the number of import containers in marine terminals, and a 35% drop in import containers dwelling nine days or more.

The port is scheduled Monday to enforce a “Container Excess Dwell Fee” on containers lingering at the port, one of several efforts intended to speed the processing of cargo and eliminate a backlog of ships trying to deliver merchandise. The fee’s enactment was delayed due to progress reducing the number of import containers at the port.

Loaded exports dropped 32% compared to the same month in 2020, and empty containers increased 2%.

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