The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) handled more than 35,000 containerised vehicles in 2023, ten times the amount it handled in the previous year.

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Newark container port is managed by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey

There continues to be a tightness of capacity in the ro-ro sector as new build vehicle-carrying ships come to market. Added to which, deep-ocean schedules have been impacted by geopolitical disruption in the Red Sea, as well as by drought in the Panama Canal. This has affected throughput at the US vehicle handling ports in the first quarter. A spokesperson for the port authority said one of the consequences of the shortage of ro-ro capacity was the higher number of cars in containers.

Georgia Ports Authority said containerised vehicle shipments through Savannah port had been minimal in 2023 but that it was seeing a sizable increase this year.

In total the port of New York and New Jersey processed over 403,000 vehicles, 92% of which were imports. That is a decrease of 9.2% on the 444,000 moved the previous year. However, through February, there port moved more than 60,100 vehicles, a 14.5% increase from the same timeframe last year.

BMW and Toyota have terminals at the port and terminal operator FAPS also has a facility for processing vehicles for Ford, GM, Nissan, Polaris, Polestar and Nissan, among others.

PANYNJ is also taking in vehicles diverted from Baltimore following the collapse of the Francis Scott Key bridge in March.

“With the Port of Baltimore being the nation’s busiest for handling vehicles, some cars and trucks that would’ve been destined for Baltimore will instead be offloaded at New York/New Jersey and trucked to Baltimore via car carrier,” said a spokesperson for the port. “There, auto processors will be able to continue their usual work, adding accessories and other customisations to the new vehicles.”

Class 1 railroads CSX and Norfolk Southern, which serve New York and New Jersey port have added a service to and from Baltimore. The new route is moving containers that are now also coming to the Port of New York and New Jersey which need to get to the Baltimore area.

“Additionally, our Truck Service Center has assisted over 450 Baltimore trucks get registered in the port’s truck registry thrhough. the PortTruckPass platform.

The increase in the number of cars in containers registered by PANYNJ is a switcharound from two years ago when a shortness of container ship capacity led to automakers moving containers of parts on ro-ro vessels through the FAPS terminal

Read more about New York and New Jersey port and the other top-performing North American vehicle-handling ports in the forthcoming summer edition of Automotive Logistics magazine, which is published in May.

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Port processing, ocean ro-ro, and inland road and rail transport will be under discussion at next month’s Finished Vehicle Logistics North America conference, which takes place in Huntington Beach between May 21-23