Houston levies new box dwell fee

America’s premier bulk liquids port is cracking down on ‘excess’ container dwell time.

Port of Houston levies new box dwell fee

A Sustained Import Dwell Fee went into effect at Port of Houston on 1 February to help maintain fluidity at the Bayport and Barbours Cut container terminals and address long-term dwell.

The US$45 fee is being charged per unit per day starting on the eighth day after the expiration of free time.

This fee is in addition to the demurrage charges for loaded import containers provided for in certain subrules and does not replace those charges, the port emphasised. Containers will be on hold until all terminal fees are reconciled; payment of the fees will be the responsibility of the cargo owner.

“The Sustained Import Dwell Fee is intended to minimise long-term storage of containers on the terminals and promote fluidity of cargo movement,” said Roger Guenther, executive director at Port Houston. “We’ve seen during the recent increase in demand that containers sitting on terminals for an extended period of time are a challenge. We are implementing this additional tool to help optimize space at our terminals and keep goods moving to the consumers in our region who need them.”

This past October, the Port Commission approved the new dwell fee structure to help reduce the amount of time containers sit on terminal. After making the necessary software upgrades, the Sustained Import Dwell Fee will now go into effect beginning February 1.

An Excessive Import Dwell Fee was also approved in October, which can be implemented by Port Houston’s executive director as needed. If implemented, it will take effect following 30 days’ public notice and remain in effect for at least sixty days. It is not being implemented at this time.