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Heatwave Impacting Container Moves

Updated: Aug 14, 2022


As if enduring the heatwaves this summer wasn’t enough, they’re also having an impact on barging freight.


With record low levels of rainfall, Europe’s rivers are running dry, affecting container moves along the inland waterways of Northern Europe. And with little sign of rain in the coming weather forecast, it seems the situation can only get worse.


barge
Europe’s rivers are running dry, affecting container moves along the inland waterways of Northern Europe.

Contargo has already placed low water surcharges on the Kaub guage. Now they’ve announced surcharges for the Duisburg-Ruhrort and Emmerich gauge as well, and they’re warning that some schedules may not be met.


“Costs resulting from missed departures of sea ships or late delivery of containers are beyond the sphere of our responsibility, since due to the circumstances of low water we are not answerable for them.”

Contagro


Surcharges are hefty. Contargo is imposing surcharges of €387 per 20ft box and €514 per 40ft box surcharge on the Kaub guage. The Rhine Forecast shows even lower real-time water levels, resulting in a further price hike - barge operators could now charge €589 per 20ft and €775 per 40ft box.


“The impact on water levels on all rivers is heavy, and rates for the 135 x 1,750 barges are skyrocketing. Many owners are cancelling their charters with container barge operators.”

Contagro


There are also worries that low water levels could lead to the forced closure of the Rhine by the end of next week. This would mean everything would have to move over to road haulage as rail cannot fill the gap.


The result? Even higher costs...

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