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The Mike Smyth Show
July 12, 2023

Paul Brashier, VP of drayage and intermodal ITS Logistics joins Mike Smyth to talk about the Vancouver port strike.

6:40 We continue to keep a close eye on this labor dispute here as we enter another day of strike action at British Columbia’s ports. You are hearing a growing chorus of political leaders across the country here calling for federal intervention to bring this strike to an end which is costing the economy millions and millions of dollars. Let’s check in with analyst Paul Brashier, VP of drayage and intermodal at ITS Logistics based in Nevada.

You are an analyst based in Nevada; you have your eye on this going on here north of the border because we are also interconnected. Can you tell me a little bit about when we got the ports in BC shut down like this, what kind of impact does it have across the whole system?

“ITS Logistics has clients throughout all of North America and the biggest thing we are seeing as far as effect on US supply chains, is a lot of that freight coming into Prince Rupert and Vancouver transitions over to rail which gets pulled off the ramps for auto manufacturers, distributors, retailers in the mid-west. Primarily Chicago but also in Indy over in Columbus. That freight we call just in time supply chains which means they don’t have a lot of slack before they start missing that freight which in turn could shut down operations at a lot of facilities in the United States. ” said Paul Brashier.

This is how much is on the line here on both sides of the boarder. When you take a look at that shipping network that you are describing, are we in peak shipping season right now? There is a lot of stuff being shipped through the ports right now.

“It is Mike. When you go to the store in November or October to buy Christmas gifts or even back to school supplies. A lot of those goods are coming into North America right now and during the last ILWU headwinds that we had in the states and further back into the Covid times, this area in British Columbia and Prince Rupert and in Vancouver were set up to be stop gaps or release valves to continue to get freight into United States and in the central and eastern Canada. What you will probably start seeing is considerably more congestion and more problems–kind of metastasized down in the western part of the United States and the mid-west because of the strike activity.” said Brashier.

When we have all these ports shut down in British Columbia, what do the shipping companies do? Is there any type of work around for them? Can they divert their ships, their container ships to American ports?

Listen to the full interview here starting at 6:40.