COVID-19 Shipping Update

As the COVID-19 situation begins to stabilize in China, the impact of the virus on public health and economy is being felt in an increasing number of other countries in Asia, Europe and North America. Local authorities and regions are increasingly applying restrictions to prevent the spread of the virus throughout the world, potentially impacting production and supply chains.The US government announced a travel ban from Europe, the United Kingdom, and Ireland to the United States as a precautionary measure against the further spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).  It is important to note this measure only applies to the movement of people – and should not affect cargo transportation, however as a result of any pandemic, there will be some interruptions.

Scarbrough’s Operations

With that being said, Scarbrough, carriers, and other freight forwarders alike are doing their utmost to reduce the impact of COVID-19 on supply chains.

Scarbrough has been in communication with ocean, air and rail carriers, as well as partners in global locations. For the most part, cargo is still moving as normal with some interruptions. Scarbrough’s team is equipped operationally to work remote from home. If cargo is significantly impacted, clients will receive an update from their dedicated customer service representative just as normal operations occur.

Ocean cargo from China is seeing significant delays, however, with the exception of Wuhan district, about 80% of Chinese factories are back to full capacity and production.  Operations in Vietnam and Taiwan are back to normal, as well.  One should expect congestion, equipment shortages, possible surcharges, and delays on all ocean cargo regardless of the origin.

Most ocean carriers are stating they will remain fully operational. Vessels are sailing as scheduled, including blank sailings, and all office employees are working remotely to secure business continuity.  All office locations are closely monitoring the local situation throughout the world. The carriers state they plan to proceed with operations as normal accepting ocean and inland bookings, carrier haulage, and equipment.

Most airlines have cancelled several flights outbound and inbound.  This makes capacity tight, driving up shipping costs and potentially delaying the delivery of goods.  At the moment, in order to serve our air cargo clients, we must quote on a case by case basis. We usually quote air freight within the same business day. However, due to the current situation, quote response time and cargo turnaround may be delayed. For more information or to receive a rate request, please email your direct customer service representative or  Should you need more detailed information about a specific lane, please reach out to your direct customer service representative.

At the moment, operations at the North American borders are flowing as normal.


Please try to understand that in this situation, congestion surcharges, transit times and delays cannot be controlled.  Scarbrough will continue to monitor the situation, while keeping our partners and friends located around the world in our thoughts.  Scarbrough will send updates on your cargo if it is significantly affected.  If you have any specific questions, please contact your direct customer service representative.

What to do

To view the most up-to-date information on cases in the United States, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In the meantime, follow these precautions in order to avoid catching the virus or more importantly passing along what could be a fatal virus to someone else:Avoid close contact with sick people.While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible.Stay home if you are sick.Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands; germs spread this way.Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs.Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub with at least 60% alcohol.

What better time than now to take advantage
of Supply Chain Consulting?

Scarbrough Consulting, Inc. is offering 30-minute consultations via Zoom conference call to ensure supply chain optimization, helping companies to reduce cost, mitigate risk, ensure compliance and add to the bottom line.

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Scarbrough offers free training on demand.  Full webinar recordings, spliced playlists of each question/answer, presentation downloads and other resources, as well as podcast options are all available online. Click on the images below to check it out!

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