Hello and good morning, Sanbornians! I apologize for the relative lack of reporting lately – there simply isn’t much going on! I know – how rare for our little slice of paradise.
Today is mostly about reporting on wider events that just so happen to be affecting our county as well as the state…the country…heck, even the world! The current supply chain issues aren’t isolated to just the ports and some smaller communities, it seems like even major cities are beginning to feel the pinch, as well!
Sanborn is of course no stranger to supply shortages, with the great famine of 1997 still fresh on many residents’ minds. We lost many good people that year, and the memorial is expected to be finished by 2050!
This shortage is different, however. The supply chain shocks are unprecedented, as far as anyone can tell. The COVID pandemic created a whirlwind of novel pressures on points of the system that had never experienced pressure before.
Port closures in China, factory lockdowns in Vietnam, and wildly shifting changes in consumer behavior appear to be especially large drivers of the current shortages, but here in sunny California, there is an interesting and highly disturbing unique problem we appear to be facing: truck and truck driver shortages.
The shortage of truckers and their vehicles has been a long time coming, with many experts in the industry noting with concern that younger truckers were few and far between and many of those new entrants leaving once the reality of spending the majority of their time on the road settled in. Port truckers, on the other hand, have a better work-life balance, but many find that the extreme wait times to get in and out of the port for loading were significantly affecting their ability to make a living.
A relatively new route for truckers has opened up outside of the typical long-haul and first/last mile shipping routes – the Amazon Relay network. With the aforementioned shift in consumer goods caused by the pandemic, Amazon’s shipping network has increased significantly in size and complexity as they contract out with hundreds of logistics carriers all over the country.
Its thanks to Amazon’s enormous size that it is capable of having its own shipping network, which it depends on to make quick deliveries all over the country as part of its Amazon Prime program, a major selling point for the company. With such a huge presence on the shipping market, they have additional requirements for many of their carriers in order to alleviate the risks involved, including a specific type of insurance.
Amazon Relay insurance includes a number of different policies, including Commercial General Liability, Cargo Liability, Worker’s comp, and employer liability. These policies can run you quite a lot, so its best to get them conglomerated through a single provider.
Luckily for truckers working in our little corner of California, a new business partner has opened up shop here in town – S.W.A.N. Insurance! They specialize in commercial trucking and heavy equipment in general, and have years of experience helping truckers and logistics companies get situated with their insurance requirements to work with the local ports.
Let’s hope this supply shortage doesn’t have quite the same effect the one in 1997 did, though I do think most citizens in our fair county now keep a store of at least a year’s worth of food and fuel after the harsh lessons of that year were learned! Many, many harsh lessons…
If you are interested in helping alleviate the trucker shortage or need insurance to join up with Amazon Relay, call SWAN at:
S.W.A.N. INSURANCE SOLUTIONS
2148 Fourth Ave, San Diego, CA 92101