July 8, 2015
The latest news, company announcements, DHX-Dependable Hawaiian Express events and industry-position posts.

When Capacity Issues Thwart the Best Laid Plans

Pasha Hawaii (Pasha) recently took over the ocean carriage and shipping from Horizon Lines (RIP) to/from the US Mainland and Hawaii. Pasha announced numerous changes to the ship to Hawaii sailing schedules and attempted to hit the ground running while reducing staff previously employed by Horizon Lines (Horizon) and not taking on all of Horizons systems.

We like Pasha and we like what they stand for – the American dream of a family-owned business making it big. We know they need to be successful in shipping. But thus far the sound of their boots hitting the ground are a distinctive thud.

Because of service interruptions and schedule changes made by Pasha, Matson Navigation Co. (Matson) has been plotting its own changing course in Hawaii delivery.

Matson has taken over the Alaska trade from Horizon, but Alaska is not known for many trade route shipping issues, and it’s not our core business like Hawaii. What DHX-Dependable Hawaiian Express does know is that Matson has increased the number of vessels serving Hawaii, from nine to eleven, a 22% gain in capacity.

Matson now suffers from space issues in their Hawaii terminal, and chassis shortages in Hawaii. The two problems combined have limited Matson’s ability to get vessels into Hawaii because of too little space for their equipment. They are so cramped they have started giving Young Brothers outer island container loads so Matson is not using their terminal space to store outer island containers. Matson also did this so Matson could then get the chassis back to reuse in Matson’s own “container mounting on chassis” efforts.

This is lots of extra work to keep the propellers turning in a clogged sea of containers. It has turned into quite a quagmire for Pasha and for Matson. Matson certainly isn’t running like the Swiss railroad; they’re congested and their on-time performance is suffering. That said, Matson remains fluid and is taking a lot of steps to improve their timeliness.

DHX-Dependable Hawaiian Express knows Pasha has also made numerous positive moves to shore up their service. The results are starting to show in a positive way.

For those of you watching the shipping and logistics industry, the issues should be short-lived. The folks at Matson will react and take necessary measures to keep merchandise flowing to Hawaii, albeit in the short term, with minor delays. Pasha too will rise to the occasion with the necessary corrections to ensure their new systems and operations function as they should.

We have lots of smart people in the ocean shipping business to Hawaii who are facing challenges in the next couple of months. We remain confident that all will be better by then.

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