Valley businesses hurt by cargo backlog

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Despite last month's tentative labor agreement, West Coast shipping port leaders said it may take three months to clear the cargo backlog. Many freight containers were still stacked up in ports or sitting offshore.

Small businesses in the Valley have been playing the waiting game since November. Swimming pool nets and maintenance equipment have just arrived at J & S Pool Supply in Clovis.

Owner Jim Schaubslager said, "This is the time of year they start having to replace them because they've been sitting out all year, all winter."

Schaubschlager expected most of the items in January but they were now just starting to trickle in. He said, "We had things on order, parts on order for our barbeques or some of our supplies that were not getting here and they were saying the backlog it's going to be 6-8 weeks before we get them or more."

J & S Pool specializes in pool equipment and outdoor bar-b-que and leisure living. Some bar-b-ques don't have all the parts to be assembled and some customers have needed spare parts.

Jim said, "It's real frustrating for us and them because it's taking so long to get them when usually you get them in a couple of weeks or maybe even a week and it's taking six weeks."

Schaubslager has been waiting for a shipment of his popular Yeti coolers and cups. "It's a waiting game at this point and it's hurt a lot of people."

He added consumers may end up paying more for many items shipped from overseas because companies have been charged more to store cargo offshore and at ports.

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