Hanjin bankrupty leaves Seattle customers waiting

One local company continues to wait for a stranded ship almost a week after Hanjin declared bankruptcy.

One Seattle company’s customers are still waiting for their goods aboard Hanjin container ships.

The Hanjin Scarlet was scheduled to arrive at the Port of Seattle’s Terminal 46 last Saturday. It is still anchored off the coast of British Columbia, according to the Northwest Seaport Alliance.

One of the largest shipping companies in the world, Hanjin filed for bankruptcy last week.

On Tuesday, Hanjin’s parent company announced it will raise $90 million to unload some 45 stranded ships around the world. The ships have not come to port because of the company’s fear creditors will seize the ships.

Mark Miller, CEO at MacMillan Piper, said his customers are in limbo until Hanjin figures out the next steps.

“It puts the customers in a real pinch,” he said Tuesday at the company’s SoDo headquarters. It’s one of four Puget Sound facilities for the transloading company that loads and unloads rail cars, trucks and containers. Miller said Hanjin is one of his customers’ most popular steamship lines.

“I think the biggest impact is having the cargo tied up in shipping containers that can’t go anywhere,” he said. “That creates an eventual backlog of containers. Empty containers, loaded containers, where do they go?” he asked, noting ports do not allow the return of empty containers.

Miller said his customers, who are spread across the country and have booked with Hanjin, are now forced to re-book with other steamship lines.

This year, 35 Hanjin ships have called on the Port of Seattle’s Terminal 46. Hanjin owns the company that operates that terminal, which is still up and running.

Even with Hanjin’s parent company stepping in, it’s not clear if or when the stranded ship might call on Terminal 46.

Copyright 2016 KING


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