PierPass Diverts 48 Million Truck Trips From Los Angeles / Long Beach Peak Traffic Since 2005

LONG BEACH, Calif., July 21, 2020 – PierPass Inc. announced that its OffPeak Program has taken 48 million truck trips out of daytime Southern California traffic since the program’s inception in July 2005. OffPeak reduces cargo-related congestion and pollution in and around the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach by diverting truck trips to night and Saturday shifts funded by the program.

The number of annual truck trips to and from the ports rose 20% between 2005 and 2019, a period that saw no significant expansion of nearby highway capacity.

“The PierPass OffPeak program has helped the LA/LB ports continue operating as a major source of jobs in Southern California,” said Congressman Alan Lowenthal. “I was very proud to spearhead the legislative effort that led both to the creation of PierPass and to extended hours at the ports.”

The OffPeak Program established regular night and Saturday work shifts at the two adjacent ports. The expanded shifts are primarily funded by a Traffic Mitigation Fee (TMF) levied on loaded containers entering and exiting the ports by truck.

Because there is no fee on intermodal cargo (containers leaving or arriving by rail), the TMF is paid by cargo headed for Southern California and other nearby destinations. For example, containers arriving from Asia and leaving the ports by rail to other parts of the U.S. don’t pay the TMF.

“PierPass is a prime example of the private sector joining together to take coordinated action to address the needs of the goods movement industry and the needs of the community,” Rep. Lowenthal added. “Their OffPeak program has helped our economy, our workers, and the health of our residents.”

The OffPeak Program was restructured in November 2018 after an 18-month process of consultation with industry stakeholders, and an analysis and survey by industry consultants. The revised program, informally called “PierPass 2.0,” reduces traffic congestion by spreading cargo movement across two shifts using appointments.

Heavy-duty trucks are the largest source of smog-forming nitrogen oxide emissions and toxic diesel exhaust in the region. By decreasing the time that trucks are idling and stuck in traffic, the OffPeak program has also helped to improve air quality.

“The severe traffic impacts caused by cargo movement in the pre-PierPass era of daytime-only operation is becoming a distant memory,” said PierPass President John Cushing. “The program has enabled Southern California’s distribution centers and warehouses to regularly operate a second shift, and has been a model for other ports around the country that have created their own programs for extended gates.”

TMF at Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to Increase 4.2% on August 1

LONG BEACH, Calif., June 30, 2020—The West Coast MTO Agreement (WCMTOA) today announced that on August 1, 2020, the Traffic Mitigation Fee (TMF) at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach will increase by 4.2 percent. The adjustment matches the combined 4.2 percent increase in longshore wage and assessment rates that take effect in early July.

Beginning August 1, the TMF will be $33.47 per TEU (twenty-foot equivalent unit) or $66.94 for all other sizes of container. The TMF is charged on non-exempt containers. Containers exempt from the TMF include empty containers; import cargo or export cargo that transits the Alameda Corridor in a container and is subject to a fee imposed by the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority; and transshipment cargo. Empty chassis and bobtail trucks are also exempt.

The OffPeak program provides regularly scheduled night or Saturday shifts to handle trucks delivering and picking up containers at the 12 container terminals in the two adjacent ports. PierPass launched the OffPeak program in 2005 to reduce severe cargo-related congestion and air pollution on local streets and highways around the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports. Nearly half of all port truck trips now take place during the off-peak shifts. The container terminal operators mitigate truck traffic at their gates with appointment systems that spread truck trips out over the hours of operation.

The TMF helps offset the cost of operating extended gate hours. Labor costs are the largest single component of extended gate costs.

According to an analysis by maritime industry consultants SC Analytics, the net costs incurred by the terminals to operate the off-peak shifts in 2019 totaled $262 million. During that year, the terminals received $223 million from the TMF, offsetting about 85 percent of the OffPeak program’s costs.

About PierPass
PierPass is a not-for-profit company created by marine terminal operators at the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach to address multi-terminal issues such as congestion, air quality and security. The West Coast Marine Terminal Operator Agreement (WCMTOA) is filed with the Federal Maritime Commission, and comprises the 12 international MTOs serving the Los Angeles and Long Beach ports.

Effective Tuesday: Second Shift Hours Adjusted at Port Terminals

Effective Tuesday, March 24, 2020, the marine terminal operators in the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach will be sanitizing terminal equipment between the first and second shifts.

Therefore, until further notice, the second shift will start at 7:00 p.m. and end at 4:00 a.m.

Should you have any questions, please contact the terminal.