Truckers Strike Rumored - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

12/20/02

Truckers Strike Rumored

It's been a rough week for truckers trying to get in and out of the Georgia Ports. Lines stretched for miles, with some truckers waiting close to four hours before even getting through the gates. The Ports blamed a computer problem for one particular backlog on Tuesday, but truckers say they have been facing these long lines for some time now.

Roy Covenah's first trip to the Georgia ports this morning should only have taken him an hour to an hour and a half at most. But lately, truckers say they've been facing ridiculously long lines that hold them up and cost them money. So our cameras followed him, leaving the barn at exactly 9:15am. Two hours and twenty minutes later, Covenah pulled in.

It's a problem everyone in the industry is facing, and truckers say lately there have been rumors of a strike. As driver Dutch Besier told us, "We don't make any money now, so might as well not do anything at all."

The port is calling the delays growing pains. Increased port business in a short amount of time has left the port in need of more equipment and more people.

"We have heard concerns of the trucking community, and we are acting on them by keeping gates open longer, hiring up more employees, and by working long hours to reduce those lines," said Robert Morris of the GPA.

They're lines that for the time being, truckers say, remain long and costly. The GPA says it expects to see less traffic after the holiday rush. It also says it's seeing an influx of containers as a result of the strikes on the West Coast.

Reported by: Elizabeth Garcia, egarcia@wtoc.com

 

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