LA-LB to keep containers ships further offshore

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The Southern California shipping industry will limit the number of ships allowed to drop anchor directly off the coast starting Nov. 16 to improve safety and reduce emissions as the number of container ships and other types of vessels waiting at anchor reached 92 ships earlier this week. The plan will require eastbound ships to anchor 150 miles west off the coast, and north- and south-bound vessels stay at least 50 miles offshore. The new process, developed by the Pacific Maritime Association, the Pacific Merchant Shipping Association, the Marine Exchange of Southern California, and individual companies, will not apply to vessels currently at anchor. Starting Tuesday, arriving ships will be assigned a spot in the arrival queue that is based on when they left their last port of call. That will allow ships to slow their speeds, reducing emissions and risk of accidents as winter weather conditions approach, according to Capt. James Kipling Louttit, the marine exchange’s executive director.  As of Tuesday, there were 30 container ships at berth and a record 81 vessels at anchor in the Los Angeles-Long Beach complex, according to the marine exchange. There was a total of 103 ships that same day at anchor and another 63 at berth.

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