Port of Los Angeles officials have made plans for the nation's first container-inspection facility on 14 acres of Terminal Island. Too bad there's no money to fund it. California Apparel News also reports that customs brokers are concerned the facility would delay the time it take to move cargo through the nation's biggest port complex.
The high-tech container facility would be the first of its kind in the country, according to port officials, and would be in addition to the four privately run warehouses scattered 10 miles away throughout Carson, Calif., where customs inspectors scrutinize containers for contraband, transshipped goods, drugs and security-suspicious items. The building would be owned by the port but used by a diverse group of law enforcement agencies, primarily U.S. Customs and Border Protection, for inspection of special, high-risk and randomly selected cargo containers.
If you think getting through airport security is a pain, consider the logistics involved in examining the thousands of cargo containers that go through the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Well, most of the containers aren't examined; the ones that do get taken to nearby warehouses, a process that can take up to five days. Obviously, there is little enthusiasm for checking everything. At a cost of $75 million to $90 million, the proposed facility would be used by U.S. Customs and Border Protection for inspection of special, high-risk and randomly selected cargo containers.