Following the devastating August 12, 2015, blast at the Port of Tianjin, in Northern China, port operations are slowly returning to normal. The explosion, which was suspected to be caused by dangerous materials, closed a portion of the EuroAsia Terminal; the other terminals at the port were unaffected and remain fully operational.
In the aftermath of the explosion, Chinese officials have banned the transport of hazardous materials on ships moving through the port, as well as oil and chemical tankers. Although shipments containing dangerous materials have been banned by authorities for the time being, all non-dangerous goods are being exported and imported.
Presently, all berths, off-dock depots, and terminals are fully operational. However, as a result of the explosion, berths are congested and experiencing low productivity, forcing vessels to stay in port longer than expected. Resulting from the congestion, US importers could experience delays receiving imports from China. The extent of supply chain disruption is currently unknown. Experts believe it could impact the global supply chain over the next few months and some trade officials speculate years of impact.
Environmental officials have observed levels of sodium cyanide, in both the air and water around the explosion zone, at levels substantially higher than the safety level. The implications from an environmental and human health standpoint could further hinder supply chain recovery as the workforce will be unable to return until the hazardous working conditions have been addressed.
In addition, an event of this magnitude makes the claim settling process challenging. It is estimated that insured losses from the explosions could potentially exceed $1.5 billion. Making the claim process more difficult, direct insurers and their policyholders have been unable to inspect, on site, the extent of loss and damage because of chemical contamination.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions as the Port of Tianjin continues the recovery process.