Thursday, September 8, 2011

Flooding in Pennsylvania will Delay Shipping

Flooding in eastern Pennsylvania will have a big impact on e-commerce shipping in much of the eastern United States.   The area facing record level flooding is home to fulfillment centers of nearly every large e-commerce company.  With roads closed, these centers will have difficulty both getting products delivered to the centers and shipments to customers out.   Among the e-retailers that will be affected is Amazon which has three fulfillment centers in the region.

Shipments from United Parcel Service, FedEx and the Postal Service that travel by ground through this region will need to find circuitous alternative routes as some major Interstates may remain closed for a few days.   The delay in opening highways in Pennsylvania is due to the task of inspecting 100's of bridges over flood swollen creeks and rivers.  UPS shipments may also face delays if the flood affects rail service that transports United Parcel Service trailers.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has urged that travel in eastern Pennsylvania be curtailed.  Flooding in the Susquehanna, Schuylkill and Delaware watersheds are at or near record levels not seen since Hurricane Agnes in 1972.   Mandatory evacuation of areas flooded in 1972 is occurring in nearly all communities along the Susquehanna River.

The flooding has already closed both I-80 west of I-81 and I-81 north of Harrisburg as well as numerous U.S. highways and state roads.   Later today Harrisburg is expected to be isolated as I-81 and I-83 entrances to the city are closed.  

No comments: