BETHLEHEM, Pa. - You've noticed the shortages and the price increases. President Joe Biden announced new action aimed at trying to fix it Wednesday afternoon.
Biden was joined by the Executive Directors of the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to announce new 24/7 operations. 40% of shipping containers come through those ports.
Walmart, FedEx, and UPS will increase operations to 24/7 as well to ease supply chain bottlenecks. So will Target, The Home Depot, and Samsung.
"COVID has really stretched the supply chain. And you've found out you're not getting reliable transportation, you're not getting enough labor to do what you need to do, you're not getting enough raw materials," said economist Zach Zachariah, the Director of the Center for Supply Chain Research at Lehigh University.
Zachariah agrees it could help, but there are other issues.
"Having things 24/7 is going to have some benefit but do they have the people to run those types of shifts," Zachariah said.
Andy Plank, owner of Blue Eagle Logistics in Breinigsville, agrees there are labor shortages at the docks and in trucking.
"There's a shortage of what we call chassis – which is the wheels that the ocean container actually goes on," Plank said.
The administration is hoping to improve things before the holidays, but that is unlikely.
"I'm starting to read articles in the trade press that says this will last through 2023," Plank said.
"We're definitely looking at maybe three quarters down the road. I don't know if it's going to 2023," Zachariah said.