BALTIMORE (Oct. 22, 2013) — Longshoremen at the Port of Baltimore were back at work Oct. 18 after a three-day strike that paralyzed one of the East Coast's largest ports.
Members of International Longshoremen's Association (ILA) Local 333 agreed late Oct. 17 to return to their jobs for the next 90 days while the ILA and the Steamship Trade Association of Baltimore continue contract negotiations.
Among many other importers, the strike posed a potential problem for Pirelli Tire L.L.C., which had 20 containers of tires in the port waiting to be unloaded, a Pirelli spokesman told Tire Business.
By contrast, Continental Tire the Americas L.L.C. had only one container of tires at the port, a Conti spokeswoman said.
A spokesman for Michelin Tire North America Inc. said his company does not import significant amount of tires through the Port of Baltimore, and a spokeswoman for Vredestein Tires North America said her company imports tires exclusively through the Port of New York.
Pavel Charvát, president of Mitas Tires North America, told Tire Business the tire maker only imports a few raw materials and a small volume of tires that are not manufactured directly at the company's agricultural tires plant in Charles City, Iowa.
"One of the pillars of Mitas' strategy in the U.S. is to diffuse any risk of delay," he said, "so, for example, we use more than just one port for our shipments. The Port of Baltimore is not our most important port.
"Our broker is very flexible and able to reorganize shipments in the case of 'complications.' As a result, the strike at the Port of Baltimore has had no impact on our business."