Automation halves truck turn times at Long Beach port terminal

In possibly the strongest pitch yet for the benefits that marine terminal automation can deliver to truckers, the president of Long Beach Container Terminal said visit times at the newly automated facility are less than half the average truck visit time for the 13-terminal Los Angeles-Long Beach port complex as a whole.

Anthony Otto told a meeting of the California Trucking Association in Long Beach last week that the portion of the terminal that has been automated is producing average turn times, from arrival at the pedestal outside the entry gate to the exit gate, of 38 minutes to 40 minutes. By comparison, the truck mobility turn times published each month by the Harbor Trucking Association listed the average turn time in April as 85 minutes.

LBCT, which operates the Middle Harbor terminal in Long Beach, has been rolling out the first phase of its $1.3 billion automation project for the past two months. As of last week, automation of vessel, yard, gate and on-dock rail operations in the first portion of the 342-acre terminal to be upgraded has been completed. The entire automation project is scheduled for completion in 2019.

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