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Author Topic: Where are all the containers?  (Read 1139 times)

Tom

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Where are all the containers?
« on: December 11, 2017, 08:50:51 PM »
As we drive our freeways, I'm always wondering about the logistics of the countless containers I see on rail cars and on trucks. Recently I've been watching an Amazon Prime documentary series on the subject. It blows my mind to hear that one of the larger ships carries 18,000 containers, and that there are 38 million containers around the world, all of which are tracked.


Rotterdam, in the Nederlands, is one of the largest ports/container terminals in the world, but they've been superseded by a couple of terminals in China.
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Madjack

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2017, 09:12:12 PM »
Tom, I live on Puget Sound across from Seattle and watch the container ship traveling to Seattle and Tacoma
Take a look at this website and look at all the marine traffic
https://www.marinetraffic.com
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OBX

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2017, 09:30:53 PM »
I'm always fascinated by the ship yards, freight trains, etc.  The Northern section of the Jersey turnpike is really cool, you have huge container operations on one side and airplanes taking off and landing on the other side.  Two weekends ago I was checking out the Boston container ship yard.  I get distracted and DW gets on me to watch where I'm going.  Out West I was watching the Seattle operations and DW was like "yeah, really cool".  I'm sure she was equally fascinated.  I like seeing the freight trains as well.

OBX

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2017, 09:34:02 PM »
My wife ordered a new Volvo a few years ago.  We tracked the ship and knew when it docked in Halifax and then in NJ. 

Arch Hoagland

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2017, 10:34:08 PM »
Took a cruise to the Panama Canal last year and saw a couple of those extra gigantic container ships going through the new canal built special for them.  I'm amazed they don't tip over in the storms at sea.   
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OBX

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #5 on: December 11, 2017, 11:02:14 PM »
I believe containers fall overboard during some storms.  I've read that you can go as passenger on some of the ships.

Tom

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2017, 02:23:48 AM »
Thanks Madjack. Interesting perspective on marine traffic. I use an app with similar views of air traffic when family flies in or leaves,
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Tom

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2017, 02:28:09 AM »
I believe containers fall overboard during some storms.


And they're like an iceberg (mostly sub-surface). It always bothered me if/when we travelled up/down the coast at night, because they don't show up on radar.
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Mr Bojangles

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2017, 04:35:54 AM »
Wow!

The web site "MadJack" references just blows my mind.
There is another view (presentation) in a Web page or somewhere (?), where 24 hrs of Air traffic around the world is represented by 'dots of light", starting slowly (12:01 AM) and then presenting nothing but a white screen of light (dots) by mid day. One can no longer distinguish the DOTS, then in later evening hours, the dots start to appear again.

These illustrations (web pages) move me to the words I have been exposed to in life.....
"I Know that I don't know!".
Thank you all...........
SAFBVET    Jim O
28 trips out.... 88,000 Miles -S  to Key West, SW to Gulf...w to Texas, NW Oregon, across Canada.

Bill N

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2017, 07:14:23 AM »
There was recently a great one hour TV show following a container ship traveling in the middle east from port to port until it finally ended up in Spain.  Those 18,000 containers on one ship are impressive but to know that a lot of them are individually monitored if they have special or dangerous cargo is also comforting.  All of the specially monitored containers are carried below and not topside and some are even kept pressurized for some reason or other.  Wouldn't it be wonderful if all these products were manufactured in the United States? 

Bill
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Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #10 on: December 12, 2017, 09:27:57 AM »
Many years ago now, one of the guys in my Specialty Systems group at IBM was working on an improved tracking system for containers and rail cars. The cars and containers all have passive microwave tags that get read as they pass various points in freight docks/yards, rail sidings, switch points, etc. all over the world. It's a huge and fascinating market for computerized gear, networking equipment and servers, but it's also a cut-throat business using well known hardware & software technology and we could never come up with a breakthrough that would give us a market advantage, or at least a patentable technology to sell.  Finally gave up on our project to focus on more profitable areas.
Gary
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catblaster

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #11 on: December 12, 2017, 09:57:19 AM »
I dont know where all the others are but one of them is in my yard full of "stuff".
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Tom

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #12 on: December 12, 2017, 10:07:08 AM »
Coincidentally, I recently watched a fictitious series based on a unionized container dockyard. They showed their computerized tracking system for containers while in port. Part of the plot involved longshoremen and their union boss making individual containers disappear from the computer and from the dockyard.
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Sun2Retire

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #13 on: December 12, 2017, 10:28:18 AM »
Take a look at this website and look at all the marine traffic
https://www.marinetraffic.com

A very cool site. I located a friend's boat in Rodney Bay, St Lucia.
Scott
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Bill N

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #14 on: December 12, 2017, 10:29:16 AM »
I dont know where all the others are but one of them is in my yard full of "stuff".

Local news a few months back had several being made into tiny homes.  A couple were even welded together to make a mega-tiny home.......lol

Bill
Bill & Joan N in Missouri
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Sun2Retire

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2017, 10:29:40 AM »
There is another view (presentation) in a Web page or somewhere (?), where 24 hrs of Air traffic around the world is represented by 'dots of light", starting slowly (12:01 AM) and then presenting nothing but a white screen of light (dots) by mid day. One can no longer distinguish the DOTS, then in later evening hours, the dots start to appear again.

Here ya go:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1US_4uf4YE
Scott
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Tom

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2017, 10:49:06 AM »
Quote from: OBX
I believe containers fall overboard ...


Check out the photos on this page (scroll down to see the photos).
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Roy M

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2017, 12:04:36 PM »
There was recently a great one hour TV show following a container ship traveling in the middle east from port to port until it finally ended up in Spain.  Those 18,000 containers on one ship are impressive but to know that a lot of them are individually monitored if they have special or dangerous cargo is also comforting.  All of the specially monitored containers are carried below and not topside and some are even kept pressurized for some reason or other.  Wouldn't it be wonderful if all these products were manufactured in the United States? 

Bill
Was that the Emma Maersk? If so I saw that one too and was fascinated, it was a mighty tight fit through the Suez canal. The container port near Vancouver is huge yet by no means the largest, the majority of the goods coming into Canada from Asia pass through it. As Gary suggests, the logistics are staggering.

OBX

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #18 on: December 12, 2017, 12:13:58 PM »
Cool pictures Tom, thanks.

rvannie23

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #19 on: December 12, 2017, 02:20:32 PM »
Local news a few months back had several being made into tiny homes.  A couple were even welded together to make a mega-tiny home.......lol

Bill


These are actually super common. You can stack them as well.  If you’re near a port a new one goes for about 5000 for the largest size and I believe it included transport but not unloading. Used can go for as low as 2000. I’ve looked into it a lot...they would make great off the grid living.


Edited to include the link: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=AHrCI9eSJGQ
« Last Edit: December 12, 2017, 02:22:24 PM by rvannie23 »
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Bill N

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #20 on: December 12, 2017, 02:21:12 PM »
Was that the Emma Maersk? If so I saw that one too and was fascinated, it was a mighty tight fit through the Suez canal. The container port near Vancouver is huge yet by no means the largest, the majority of the goods coming into Canada from Asia pass through it. As Gary suggests, the logistics are staggering.

Yes, thanks for the reminder - that was the ship.

Bill
Bill & Joan N in Missouri
USAF (Ret - 1961-1981)
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Mr Bojangles

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #21 on: December 12, 2017, 03:59:19 PM »
Tom:

Was that "Series" "The Wire", the docks of the city of Baltimore?
That is a show that I enjoyed years back where what you explained regarding Cargo Containers was talked about. It was a good show (series, running for years) and I looked forward to every show. Dead bodies showed up in one of the Containers they targeted for thief.....
Fiction writers who incorporate "technology" are great reading.

SAFBVET    Jim O
28 trips out.... 88,000 Miles -S  to Key West, SW to Gulf...w to Texas, NW Oregon, across Canada.

Tom

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #22 on: December 12, 2017, 04:06:38 PM »
That's the one Jim. Amazon Prime showed a limited number of episodes.
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blw2

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #23 on: December 15, 2017, 01:33:12 PM »
I agree...it just boggles the mind....the volume of "stuff" in motion all the time 24/365

In a similar way, we have some ports around here that import cars and you can see the lots from the road.  One we were near recently was in Brunswick GA.  pull up 31°07'27.1"N 81°32'19.4"W on google maps to have a look
another one is here 30.399831, -81.539005

 It really boggles my mind how many new cars must be sold every year.  I'm always amazed when I see it.  It also strikes me that if all these cars are being bought, most are replacing older cars....and that points to a whole other infrastructure system that you just don't see...at least I don't.... the whole thing about old junker cars that get traded in, where do they go?  I know the answer....but it's just not something I see....
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Tom

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #24 on: December 15, 2017, 02:56:20 PM »
Aye, we see the cars imported from Japan dockside in Benicia, CA.
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Mr Bojangles

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Re: Where are all the containers?
« Reply #25 on: December 15, 2017, 04:15:55 PM »
And ROUND the world goes..............

Don't forget the UNIVERSE...... our own bodies, multiply by Billions, WOW!

And I can not even get my wife's instructions correct....... Ha Ha He.
SAFBVET    Jim O
28 trips out.... 88,000 Miles -S  to Key West, SW to Gulf...w to Texas, NW Oregon, across Canada.