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Metal and Oil Prices Soaring

Posted by Land Link Traffic Systems on Nov 4, 2021 8:27:07 AM

A surge in energy and metal prices is offering investors a fresh reminder of how the commodities market can fuel inflation and imperil the post-pandemic economic recovery.

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Topics: Supply Chain Management, Third Party Logistics, Intermodal Freight, Transportation News, Reducing Freight Rates, Logistics Business, Maximizing Routing Efficiencies, 3D Printing, Shipping News, Logistics News, Industry Trends, Technology, dimensional pricing

Is It Covid, The Variant or Just The Flu

Posted by Land Link Traffic Systems on Jul 20, 2021 11:42:16 AM

There are so many unanswered questions surrounding the effects of the Covid-19 Virus to date. Where did the standard flu go? Is the Covid-19 virus threat over? Will the Covid variant force us back to a global lockdown? The stock market seems to think perhaps.

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Topics: Third Party Logistics, Freight Bill Auditing, Transportation News, Reducing Freight Rates, Logistics Business, Maximizing Routing Efficiencies, Shipping News, Industry Trends, Technology

Cargo Ship "Ever Given" Freed From The Beach

Posted by Land Link Traffic Systems on Mar 31, 2021 8:24:42 AM

The massive cargo ship Ever Given has been freed from the shores of the Suez Canal after 6 days of complete traffic blockage. Over the weekend, 14 tugboats pulled and pushed the Ever Given at high tide to try to dislodge it and were able to move the ship "30 degrees from left and right".

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Topics: Third Party Logistics, Intermodal Freight, Transportation News, Maximizing Routing Efficiencies, Shipping News, Logistics News, Technology

Logistics Technology Trends Beyond 2020

Posted by Land Link Traffic Systems on Nov 18, 2020 9:00:19 AM

There is little doubt that technology has transformed the Logistics business in the last several years. Will we ever get to fast enough or efficient enough? It's not likely. Under pressure exerted by demand for instant gratification, new tech-first logistics providers are beginning to pervade the fulfillment environment. Without the autonomous hardware that promises to supersede traditional road transportation, they are instead leveraging digital tools to improve the performance of manually executed deliveries and reduce lead times from days to hours, with 24 being today’s bargain-basement service level. These companies, through the use of customer-integrated business platforms, mobile technology, and crowd-sourcing, are finding ways to pick orders within minutes of receiving them, dispatch deliveries on-demand, and bring buyer’s purchases to them in time-frames of two hours or even less.  How are logistics professional going to keep this pace?  Here are some technology trends that may be worth a look as we enter 2021 and beyond.

Robotics

Given the energy and investment in robotics in our space, suggesting that there will be a robotics trend in 2021 is pretty obvious. After all the pilots and promises, what seems to be happening is that robot solution providers, and the end user community, are realizing that there is no one size fits all robotic applications. Quite the opposite is true. The customization is proving so complicated due to the advanced operations of the robots that the programming and engineering has become problematically complicated. Robotic applications are a very customized solution depending upon the product line, distribution protocols and warehouse volume parameters. The challenge, in addition to the design, will be the management system that can bring the components in synchronicity with the rest of the automation. The difficulty seems to be that there is no standardization among the robotic providers. Each have their own standards, communication protocols and capabilities. Someone will have to figure all of that out as robots proliferate. The next generation robots will not just be tasked with simply, repetitive and mundane projects as were the first generation. The robots of today will be much more complicated providing a wide range of services. As you increase the tasks you increase both the software and hardware configurations necessary to support the project. These ambitious goal will certainly be a challenge to the engineers and programmers.

Edge Computing

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Topics: Third Party Logistics, Freight Bill Auditing, Intermodal Freight, Transportation News, Maximizing Routing Efficiencies, Freight Bill Audit, Shipping News, Logistics News

What Freight Transportation Will Look Like Beyond 2020

Posted by Land Link Traffic Systems on Jun 25, 2020 8:06:52 AM

Technology is affecting transportation modes through the roads, sky and water. Advancements in speed and efficiency may come at some cost.

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Topics: Intermodal Freight, Reducing Freight Rates, Logistics Business, Maximizing Routing Efficiencies, Freight Bill Audit, Shipping News, Logistics News, Industry Trends

Significant Changes to Supply Chain Protocols After Covid-19

Posted by Land Link Traffic Systems on Jun 18, 2020 9:11:03 AM

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit global trade and investment at an unprecedented speed and scale. Multinational companies faced an initial supply shock, then a demand shock as more and more countries ordered people to stay at home. Governments, businesses and individual consumers suddenly struggled to procure basic products and materials, and were forced to confront the fragility of the modern supply chain. The urgent need to design smarter, stronger and more diverse supply chains has been one of the main lessons of this crisis.

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Topics: Freight Bill Auditing, Intermodal Freight, Reducing Freight Rates, Logistics Business, Maximizing Routing Efficiencies, Freight Bill Audit, Shipping News, Logistics News, Industry Trends, Big Data

Corona Virus Accelerating Drone Applications

Posted by Land Link Traffic Systems on Apr 30, 2020 10:24:37 AM

If necessity is the mother of invention a worldwide pandemic is the mother of cutting through government red tape.  Vaccine approvals are basically getting rubber stamped and that’s a good thing.  Automated vehicles are ramping up in anticipation of increased demand in this new environment as well.  UPS will use drones to fill prescriptions for residents of The Villages in Florida, one of the country’s biggest retirement communities, amid a lock down to halt the corona virus.  The time-sensitive 

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Topics: Supply Chain Management, Third Party Logistics, Transportation News, Shipping News, Logistics News, Technology

Coronavirus Appears to be Plateauing in Many States

Posted by Land Link on Apr 16, 2020 4:02:22 PM


Many states have reported a leveling-off of new Covid-19 cases. Clearly a good sign but we are by no means out of the woods yet. It is unlikely anyone alive today remembers the Spanish flu of 1918, but we may be able to learn some things to expect as we hope to return to some normalcy in the coming months. The administration is already talking about target dates to reopen the country in stages. The fallout from Covid -19 is painfully clear for many people. Let’s try to anticipate what challenges are ahead.

From a logistics and supply chain perspective, while things are still very early, it stands to reason that the impact on all things trade, shipping, and moving freight is already quite significant. There is also, of course, a high level of uncertainty that comes with a pandemic such as this one, in the form of how long it may last for, what should or could businesses be doing to get through this period, and what happens now or next? And what they all have in common is that they are all valid questions that come with a shortage of valid answers, at least so far, for the most part. The impact on supply chains more broadly will be a function of (a) how long businesses remain closed (b) the extent to which there’s an impact on downstream supply chains and (c) the extent to which precautionary measures are taken by corporations including logistics firms. We may be able to glean some information on what to expect during the recovery period by looking at the post Spanish flu recovery.

What Can We Learn From the Spanish Flu Recovery

The immediate effects of the pandemic; postponed weddings, canceled vacations, empty supermarket shelves, sinking housing prices, salary cuts, and layoffs suggest no one will come out of this period without losing something but we are only at the beginning. Predicting how bad things will get economically is difficult. A viral outbreak of this scale has only happened once before in the industrialized world: the 1918 influenza pandemic that hit the world in two seasonal waves, killing 50 million people worldwide and 675,000 in the US. That pandemic occurred during World War I, which makes it hard to compare to now, even setting aside all the other changes in the past century but we may be able to draw some loose parallels.

Many businesses, especially those in the service and entertainment industries, suffered double-digit losses in revenue. Society as a whole recovered from the 1918 influenza quickly, but individuals who were affected by the influenza had their lives changed forever. Given our highly mobile and connected society, any future influenza pandemic is likely to be more severe in its reach, and perhaps in its virulence.

Two months into this current outbreak, massive layoffs have started, American industries have demanded bailouts, and unemployment rates have surged. Economists at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis are projecting total employment reductions of 47 million — an unemployment rate of 32.1%.

According to Forbes, every sector of the American economy is shrinking: Hotel chain Marriott International is furloughing tens of thousands of workers, Landry’s, the parent company of Del Frisco’s and Bubba Gump Shrimp, laid off 40,000 workers. Air Canada plans to lay off 5,100 members of its cabin crew. Shoe retailer DSW put 80% of its workers on a temporary unpaid leave of absence. This early carnage is understandable. How fast we recover will make all the difference to the U.S. economy.  Is this perhaps a wakeup call for domestic industry revitalization? There is a strong call to bring back the industrial revolution but are we too late?

What’s Ahead is Uncertain

As we look ahead, more information about corona virus will be learned about, to be sure, but things understandably are moving slowly. Freight transportation activity, processes and volumes are likely to be impacted to varying degrees, of course. For now, we assess and move forward as best as possible. Events like this on a global level can make for trying and difficult times, but, as has been the case before, one can expect supply chain networks to adapt and adjust and do what needs to be done to keep economies and freight flows moving forward. Land Link Traffic Systems is available for your supply chain needs.

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Topics: Transportation News, Logistics Business, Shipping News, Logistics News

Urgent Restocking Continues to Boost Truckload Spot Rates and Load Volume

Posted by Land Link on Apr 1, 2020 4:00:28 PM


This month industry analysts are reporting significant upticks in spot rates and demand due to restocking demand from grocery and home good retailers. Spot market load volumes and rates for van and reefer equipment saw mostly significant gains in March due to the ongoing corona-virus pandemic, according to data issued by Portland, Oregon-based freight marketplace platform and information provider DAT.

For the week of March 16-March 22, DAT reported the following annual differences:

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Topics: Logistics Business, Shipping News, Logistics News, Industry Trends

FMCSA Helping to Ease Regulations on Truckers During COVID-19

Posted by Land Link on Mar 24, 2020 3:39:30 PM

The FMCSA is showing a united front with the White House’s emergency declaration regarding Coronavirus. The declaration will cease enforcement of some HOS rules and ease enforcement on others for truckers. FMCSA officials said that this marks the first time the organization has issued nationwide HOS relief. There are many first-time events happening during COVID-19 and these efforts are clearly necessary to keep food and critical supplies moving.

“Because of the decisive leadership of President Trump and Secretary Chao, this declaration will help America’s commercial drivers get these critical goods to impacted areas faster and more efficiently,” said FMCSA Acting Administrator Jim Mullen in a statement. “FMCSA is continuing to closely monitor the coronavirus outbreak and stands ready to use its authority to protect the health and safety of the American people.”

FMCSA officials said that this declaration provides for regulatory relief for commercial motor vehicle operations providing direct assistance supporting emergency relief efforts intended to meet immediate needs for:

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Topics: Logistics Business, Shipping News, Logistics News