STEVEDORE DPWA says it will seek to “minimise disruption” as the Maritime Union begins a wave of protected action at container terminals in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Fremantle.

This follows a breakdown in negotiations between the parties, as reported last week by Daily Cargo News.

In a notice to customers, DPWA chief commercial officer Max Kruse said the CFMMEU had advised employees would be unable to perform work upgrades.

“They have also placed bans on working continuous operations, advance/delay starts and extensions and call-ins therefore restricting the ability of the business to deliver the required labour allocation to meet the current vessel schedule,” Mr Kruse said.

“Due to the restrictions applied by the CFMMEU there will be disruptions to our customers’ vessels calling our terminals during this period.”


Mr Kruse said their berthing protocols through this period would be to work vessels in order of arrival.

“We will continue to work closely with all our shipping line customers to minimise disruption as we work through this period of protected industrial action,” he said.

Container Transport Alliance Australia director Neil Chambers said Western Australian operators had already reported minor delays on Tuesday, with a morning truck slot zone cancelled as well as the closures advertised via protected industrial action.

“We await to see what unfolds tomorrow in Sydney, and the then the planned actions in Melbourne and Brisbane are likely to have much less of an impact because they are occurring over the weekend,” Mr Chambers said.

“The trick will be as to how the local terminal management in each port works with the transport operators to minimise the impacts.

“With the Hutchison dispute for example, their Brisbane terminal fared better than their Sydney terminal due to the local management working more effectively with the transport operators to minimise the delays and other impacts.”