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Market News

Baltimore Bridge Collapse

March 26, 2024


• On March 26th, 2024 around 1:00am, container vessel Dali collided with the Francis Scott Key Bridge, resulting in the bridge collapsing.

• 3 vessels are currently moored at the Port of Baltimore and at least 10 vessels are en route to Baltimore. These vessels will all be impacted by the suspension of traffic at the port.

• The automobile industry is likely to be the most impacted, as the Port of Baltimore is the #1 port in the US for automobile imports and exports.

• Truck transit times are expected to increase as traffic must circumnavigate the now collapsed bridge causing additional road congestion.

Maersk Vessel Dali Strikes Francis Scott Key Bridge

Early morning on Tuesday, March 26th, 2024, the Dali, operated by the Synergy Group while being chartered by Maersk, collided into the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore (part of I-695) causing it to collapse. Early reports suggest the vessel, owned by Singapore based group Grace Ocean, lost power, resulting in a loss of control, but a full investigation is ongoing. At least 20 cars were on the bridge at the time, and search and rescue missions are underway to find the remaining 6 missing people.

Impacted Vessels

The map view below shows the Dali, the vessel that struck the bridge, as well as the 3 container vessels currently moored in the Port of Baltimore. Dali remains stuck under the bridge, while the three moored vessels will likely not be able to leave the port until the area is cleared and the investigation is resolved. At this time, at least 10 commercial vessels en route to Baltimore are anchored while traffic is suspended. The anchored vessels will likely divert to nearby ports in New Jersey, Virginia, and North Carolina. project44 is closely monitoring these ports for operational interruptions due to the additional volume and will update this report as new data becomes available.

Expected Supply Chain Impacts

Baltimore is a key city for automobile manufacturing in the United States, with the Port of Baltimore being the #1 handler in the US for car imports and exports. The Port of Baltimore handles freight from major automakers including, but not limited to, Nissan, Toyota, General Motors, and Volvo. Expect disruptions to manufacturing in the automobile market until companies can establish dray networks through neighboring ports. The automobile industry is notoriously lean, meaning any disruptions will have ripple effects throughout the manufacturing process.

While the automobile industry might be the most impacted, the Port of Baltimore is one of the top 15 largest ports in the US and handled over $80 billion in freight in 2023. This freight will likely have to bypass the Port of Baltimore until the area is cleared. Generally, vessels that call at the Port of Baltimore also continue to call at ports up and down the East Coast of the United States. It is likely that these containers will be discharged at the nearest port. Customers will likely have the option to choose to dray containers from the port of discharge to their final locations or the ocean carriers will be responsible for getting these containers to the Port of Baltimore for customers to pick up at the planned location.

In addition to the already mentioned impacts on the automobile industry specifically, there will be a general increase in transit time for truckloads in the area. This bridge is a part of a major highway in the Baltimore area, and with the closure, routes will be less direct and more congested. With the Francis Scott Key Bridge down, which was the bridge completing the I-695 loop around Baltimore, both cars and trucks will need to detour or be directed to neighboring bridges on I-895 and I-95. project44 is monitoring impacts on truckload transit times for shipments into and out of Baltimore to understand the full scope of the impact.

For project44 customers

At the time this report was published, project44 has made two custom views available in our platform, Movement, to help customers navigate the crisis. All project44 customers can now view all shipments and orders for both upcoming arrivals into Baltimore and upcoming departures out of Baltimore. In addition, we have notified all customers with impacted containers on the vessel involved in the incident.

Concern for Safety

While project44 has made it a priority to provide frequent updates on the Baltimore bridge collapse, the safety of the impacted people remains top priority in these challenging times. They and their families are in our thoughts.

About project44

project44 is on a mission to make supply chains work. Movement by project44, the only High-Velocity Supply Chain platform, enables shippers, LSPs and carriers across the globe to reduce costs, optimize operations, deliver an exceptional customer experience and drive greater resiliency and sustainability. Having built the industry’s largest and most connected ecosystem, project44 provides visibility into over 1 billion shipments annually for over 1,300 of the world’s leading brands.

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Disclaimer: The information conveyed herein, shared solely for summary and not contractual purposes, comes from both project44 and third-party reporting. The project44 data does not include all available market information, and project44 has not undertaken to independently verify the third-party reporting. Similarly, this type of data changes from day-to-day. Accordingly, the reader should not rely on this reporting to make any business decisions, and project44 expressly disavows any liability arising from any such reliance.

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