As dockers work around the clock to mitigate backlogs at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, empty shipping containers have been abandoned in nearby neighborhoods, according to officials.
Over 400 citations have been issued over the last several weeks for illegally stored containers in Wilmington, a neighborhood in the Harbor region of Los Angeles, said Thomas Gazsi, the chief of Los Angeles Port Police.
“We are very aware of the impact it’s having and … [officers] have been out in the neighborhoods addressing as much as possible, particularly the residential areas where driveways are obstructed and folks are having difficulty leaving in the morning for school work and variety of other things,” Gazsi said during an Oct. 21 harbor commissioners meeting.
Gazsi said port patrol, community resource, and commercial enforcement officers will provide support to affected residents.
Eugene Seroka, executive director of the Port of Los Angeles, stated in the meeting that more plans will be made to ensure the containers are properly placed.
A container fell from a truck earlier this month crushing an empty car parked on Anaheim Street in Wilmington. Though no injuries were reported, the incident prompted what is now growing concerns about shipping containers left abandoned.
Meanwhile, the City of Long Beach has temporarily waived shipping container stacking and height limits until mid-January to help to alleviate the nationwide supply chain crisis.
Aside from the abandoned shipping containers, other issues from port operations have been bothering the neighborhood for years according to local news reports, and the situation worsened amid the port backlog. Many local residents have installed barricades to prevent trucks from coming down their streets.
“Kids can’t even play,” Wilmington resident John Salas told ABC7. “Trucks come down the street and they’re not even supposed to. It’s not even a through street.”