Pack n Send Blog

Freight from Houston and US. Unions on the Rise World Wide

Posted on Mon, Jul 18, 2011

Pack n send feels that this article is relevant because it once again demonstrates that air carriers both for freight and cargo are doing business in a world wide economy. One country or airline no longer effects the entire industry.

Air Carriers Threatened By Union Intervention

WORLDWIDE – Air freight and passenger services have seen major disruptions to services in the past few years caused by bad feelings between the management and staff over terms and conditions of employment and such perks as free or reduced rates when traveling. The situation has been exacerbated of late where carriers have joined to form alliances with differing employment conditions applicable to their individual employees, despite similar routes and services.

Now a new body representing workers in the Oneworld alliance of airlines has made an offer on problem-solving and labour negotiations for what it terms a ‘constructive partnership’ between trade unions and management. The  letter, signed by the Council’s coordinator, John M Conley, says:

“I am writing to you to introduce the One World of Labour Council, a global group that comprises trade unions representing workers across the Oneworld alliance member airlines.

 “At present, industrial relations are clearly strained in a number of airlines within the Oneworld group and our unions have pledged to support each other during these challenging times. Nevertheless, we wish to express our commitment to problem-solving and negotiating in good faith with those among our management counterparts who are wiling to do the same. To this end, the Labour Council would like to invite you and your fellow leaders within Oneworld to open channels of communication with us as soon as possible, both at the national and global levels.”

Given the disparate nature of the airlines involved, the carriers will argue that an alliance of this type is a straightforward commercial agreement covering a part of their collective business, a marriage of convenience, not a deep seated and irrevocable amalgamation, nor a ‘de facto merger’ which should be reflected in changed terms of contract for the likes of cabin crew, pilots, ground staff, baggage and cargo handlers.

We have published portions of the article above from the Handy Shipping Guide because of our interest in world wide freight shipping. For information about freight and cargo shipping fromHouston, please feel free to contact pack n send at 713 266 1450.


 Free photo - map light motion available in our free stock photos


Tags: Freight Houston, Packing Housotn

Cargo Shipping Containers -New Use

Posted on Fri, Mar 04, 2011

Pack n send looks world wide for alternative uses for cargo shipping contaniers.   Douglas  Britts column in the Houston Chronicle discussed “unorthodox porposes as a cooperative, self sustaining village make largel of shipping containers.” We found the following detailed story by David Theis.  Enviornmentally smart construction and alternative use of shipping containers is always of interest to pack n send. 

By David  Theis

In Houston, there are visionaries, and then there is Nestor Topchy. At least, that’s the impression you get when you hear him talk about the  Hive  project. Hive is his brainchild, but it’s one that others have eagerly agreed to share.

Hive is an ambitious undertaking, but the concept behind it is surprisingly easy to grasp. Topchy and friends hope to construct a sort of self-contained urban village out of shipping containers. The proposed design, which Topchy worked out with architect Si Dang and others, calls for a square exterior wall comprising shipping containers stacked two deep.

The large space inside the walls (right now Hive is projected to cover 6.5 acres) will be filled green space, including trees and ponds, a few plazas, and the piece de la resistance, the “inner Hive,” a swirling, circular labyrinth made of six layers of stacked containers. The inner Hive containers will be connected by gradually sloping, wheelchair-accessible ramps.

Topchy and friends want Hive to be as self-contained and village-like as possible. So they’re hoping that containers in the outer walls will become home to a wide range of activities, from shopping to car repair to music making, while the inner Hive will be dedicated to quiet activities, such as writing, painting and meditation.

On the other hand, if worse comes to worse, and society does actually collapse, they’ll be able to close the Hive walls, medieval style, and plant a big garden. Survivalists and artists, no place but Texas. Topchy’s timeline  calls for the Hive to be completely finished by 2015.

For more information on  container shipping as well as freight shipping, please call pack n send at  713 266 1450.

News_David Theis_Nestor Topchy_Hive_shipping container_city

A rendering of what the Hive would look like if the dream comes true.



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Freight from Houston and US Market

Posted on Fri, Feb 18, 2011

A large truck drives over the bridge. <br>See more <a href="">photos by Matthew Hull</a> at PBase. <br>See my portfolio at <a href=""&...

Pack n send is monitoring freight  and  cargo shipments both within the United State and worldwide. While we specialize in Freight Shipping and loading and shipping cargo, we also like to keep our customers informed of industry trends. This article taken from Handy Shipping   Guide highlights new strengths seen in US shipping markets.

Long Beach, California based  UTI a non asset based 3PL supply chain specialist turned in better than expected results yesterday following a general upward trend for the industry. With over 23 million square feet of warehousing in 23 countries the US company shows a pattern that seems fairly typical for the freight market at the moment. The CEO however offered a customary word of caution in today’s volatile conditions.

 Eric W. Kirchner, chief executive officer, speaking of the second quarter results said in a statement:

"Our improved results were primarily driven by strong volumes and better operating margins. Airfreight and ocean freight volumes continued to grow faster than the market and were higher than volumes recorded in the second quarter two years ago, prior to the financial crisis. Results remain tempered by yield pressure due to continued high transportation rates, and we expect these rates to remain volatile on many trade lanes for the rest of the year. We are also expecting volume growth to moderate during the second half of the year due to a slowing global economy and more difficult comparisons to the prior year.

"We continue to be encouraged by improvements in our contract logistics and distribution business, which reported solid revenue growth and higher operating margins. Client volumes improved in the quarter, particularly in retail and consumer markets, and we continue to manage our operations more efficiently. Our transformation initiatives remain on schedule and we are making good progress in all areas."

UTi saw increased operating costs, up 9% against last year but it seems although traffic volumes were higher, rates were more competitive dragging profits back somewhat. Net revenues were up 12% for the half year against 2009 at $379 million.

 For more information on Houston shipping, freight and cargo shipping, please feel free to contact pack n send at 713 266 1450.

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Cargo and Freight from Port of Houston Delay

Posted on Tue, Oct 05, 2010

Delano, Jack,, 1914-, photographer.  Pennsylvania R.R. [Railroad] ore docks, unloading iron ore from a lake freighter by means of "Hulett" unloaders, Cleveland, Ohio  1943 May   1 transparency : color.  <b>Notes: </b>...This article posted on the KTRK website highlights the diffuculites that ships are having with the temporary closure of the Houston Ship Channel.  Pack n send will try and post daily updates for our customers until the Port of Houston is fully operational once again.

 HOUSTON (KTRK) -- The Coast Guard is working to reopen the Houston Ship Channel after a barge collided with a highline tower. Due to the accident, the Ship Channel is closed to marine traffic and it will remain closed until at least Tuesday or possibly Wednesday.

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The accident basically shut down the entire Ship Channel from mile marker 105 to124. So unless you are in a local vessel that is conducting business between those two markers or if you are outside of those two markers, you are basically out of luck. This could be the case until Tuesday or even early Wednesday, according to the Coast Guard.

That's a big problem because there are 18 inbound vessels waiting at the Ship Channel and 14 outbound. The longer this repair takes, the more that number will grow.

On Sunday at around 6am, a tug boat owned by American Electric Power was pushing three barges carrying scrap metal when it collided with an electrical tower that was fortunately under repair, so the lines were not live at the time.

Nineteen miles of waterway are affected by the Ship Channel closure. The Port of Houston says $322 million are lost each day it's closed. The Coast Guard has two cranes performing the work to try to clear the Channel as fast as possible. One of them is called 'Big John.'

"We have the crane, Big John, on scene and the Big John is going to connect to the tower to take the tension off the tower. Right now the tower is sitting partially on the barge and is probably being supported a little bit by the power lines that are there between the other towers," said Captain Markus Woodrings with the U.S. Coast Guard. "Once the Big John hooks up and takes the load on the tower, then CenterPoint energy can get up there, disconnect the line and reel them in and then we can cut the base of the tower, pick the tower up and put it over on the bank and get the Ship Channel open."

According to the Coast Guard, the six tug boat crew members were not injured in this accident. They have been tested for drugs and alcohol. However, those results have not yet been released. The incident is still under investigation. The tug boat's owner will be responsible for repairs.

 There are 30 yachts that are stuck in downtown Houston, members of the Houston Yacht Club who can't get out because of the closure.

The channel is the lifeline to the Port of Houston, the nation's leader in foreign waterborne tonnage and imports and runner-up in U.S. export tonnage and total tonnage.

For more information on shipping cargo out of the Port of Houston, please contact pack n send at 713 266 1450.

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US Marines Save the Cargo Ship-Houston Freight Company Proud

Posted on Fri, Sep 10, 2010

image: Somalia US pirates AK47 dry cargo freight container


Somalia-News just in as 24 US marines operating in the Gulf of Aden stormed a freight vessel today and, without firing a shot apparently, capturing the nine pirates and rescuing the eleven man crew. The German owned M V Magellan Star, an 8,000 tonne DWT general cargo and sometime container ship flagged in Antigua & Barbuda was en route from Spain to Singapore when she was intercepted transiting the Gulf.

When the pirates swarmed aboard the crew had already put out a distress call and retreated to a safe room in the engine compartment where they communicated with the ships agents by satellite telephone link after killing the engines. The pirates were confused when they used an emergency link to speak to the managing agents who apparently told them the crew were ‘on holiday’.

The pirates then apparently went on a wrecking spree presumably frustrated by their lack of success and inability to control the ship. Meanwhile a team from the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit's Maritime Raid Force aboard the USS Dubuque, and heading for an joint exercise with Jordanian troops, rerouted, arriving near the captured vessel during the night. Before daybreak two dozen marines in fast RIB’s and supported by two helicopters, launched their own attack.

As the helicopters flooded the ship’s deck in light the troops scaled the hull of the Magellan Star, much as the pirates had, and succeeded in capturing the dazed and divided villains without having to shoot anyone. The problem came when the US marines first had to find the hidden crew, then convince them their ordeal was over.

Reportedly the crew only condescended to open up when the Americans cut an access hole and pushed through a stars and stripes uniform patch through the steel panel. The troops took a number of AK 47’s from the pirates and now have the problem of what to do with them. There have been similar successes before but mostly by foreign troops unattached to the EUNAVFOR anti piracy mission or pirates caught in the open.

Pack n send has reprinted this article from the Handy Shipping   Guide. Pack n send ships freight and cargo worldwide and commends the US marines for their fast and safe actions.

For more information about our international freight shipping, please contact pack n send at 713 266 1450.

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