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Amazon: How Amazon is trying to solve supply chain problems, from chartering ships to traversing cargo planes



Amazon: How Amazon is trying to solve supply chain problems, from chartering ships to traversing cargo planes
Most cargo ships entering the port of Everett, Washington, are chock full of cement and wood. So when the Olive Bay docked in early November, it was clear that this was no ordinary shipment. Steel destined for Vancouver, British Columbia was rolled below decks, and on top were 181 containers bearing the Amazon logo. Some were empty and immediately used to shift inventory between the company’s warehouses. The rest, according to customs records, was crammed with laptop sleeves, fire pits, Radio Flyer wagons, Peppa Pig dolls, artificial Christmas trees, and dozens of other items shipped directly from China — products that Inc. needs to keep shoppers happy during a holiday season when many retailers try their best to keep their shelves full.

By chartering the Olive Bay and sending it to a relatively sleepy port a few miles north of Seattle, Amazon has put an end to shipping that has stranded vacation supplies in Los Angeles and other ports. In addition to Everett, the company has also docked in the Port of Houston. Such extreme measures have given Amazon executives confidence that they will have enough inventory to handle another record-breaking holiday buying season, as Adobe expects US consumers to spend $207 billion online, a 10% increase from from last year. Many retailers have urged consumers to shop early to avoid disappointment. Amazon’s unwavering message: bring it on!

In addition to chartering ships like the Olive Bay, Amazon hired 150,000 U.S. seasonal workers to help pick, pack and ship items, raise wages and offer signing bonuses up to $3,000. It sends half-full trucks to get packages to customers on time. The projected cost of the $4 billion logistics effort threatens to wipe out the company’s profits during the key three months of the year. But for Amazon, which has been polishing its reputation as a lifeline during the Covid-19 outbreak, the holiday season is an opportunity to extend its advantage over rivals.


If the company manages to deliver on its promises to customers this year, it will be thanks to Amazon-chartered ships bringing products from factories in Asia, Amazon Air cargo planes crisscrossing the US, Amazon vans brand that depart from hundreds of local delivery depots and the hundreds of thousands of employees and contractors every step of the way.

“There are structural benefits you have in redundancy when you’re Amazon,” said Jason Murray, a former Amazonian who led teams working on logistics software. “Amazon has its own transportation network, it has access to all carriers. Multiple ships, multiple factories.”

‘Phenomenal’ prices

This logistical prowess has not been lost to the merchants selling products on Amazon’s sprawling marketplace. For years they have resisted using the company’s global shipping service because it means sharing information about prices and suppliers, data they fear the company could use to compete with them. But container shortages in the run-up to the holiday season have prompted many of them to overcome their doubts and entrust their loads to the world’s largest online retailer. “Amazon had space on ships and I couldn’t say no to anyone,” says David Knopfler, whose Brooklyn-based sells home decor and lighting fixtures. “If Kim Jong Un had a container, I might take it too. I cannot be idealistic.”


Knopfler says Amazon’s prices were “phenomenal,” $4,000 to ship a container from China, compared to the $12,000 demanded by other shippers. Amazon is also simplifying the process as it oversees shipments from China to its US warehouses. Other services have many intermediaries where freight changes hands, creating opportunities for miscommunication and delays. “It’s a one-stop shop from Asia to Amazon,” said Walter Gonzalez, CEO of Miami-based GOJA, which sells several products on Amazon, including Magic Fiber cleaner for glasses. “It reduces the gray areas where the shipping process could fail.” Gonzalez says his company, which uses Amazon’s global logistics service, has about 95% of the inventory it needs to meet holiday demand.

Other major retailers, including Walmart Inc., have also chartered cargo ships or attempted to piggyback on ships loaded with iron ore, coal, grain or other goods, cargo consultants say. But Amazon has been preparing for this since the mid-2010s when it began booking space on freighters to provide a more seamless connection between Chinese factories and its warehouses. “A few years ago they went from zero containers per month to over 10,000 containers per month,” said Steve Ferreira, a ocean freight consultant. “The thing is now an 800-pound gorilla.”

Amazon Air

Last year, the company added chartered aircraft to the mix. Most air cargo is carried in the bellies of passenger planes, but when Covid-19 restricted travel, Amazon quickly sprang into replacing the lost space with cargo planes. This effort complements Amazon Air, the company’s fleet of 85 aircraft that moves inventory between 40 airports in the US and has expanded to Germany.


Bernie Thompson, CEO of Plugable Technologies, used Amazon’s air service to ship laptop docking stations and other electronics from China to the US to bypass clogged ports. Before the pandemic rocked supply chains, flying inventory through the air cost 10 times more than shipping it by ship. Now, thanks to a spike in the cost of shipping goods by sea, air shipping costs just four times as much — a premium Thompson was willing to pay. “As long as we don’t get stuff stranded on boats,” he says, “it’s worth it.”

Looks like Amazon has solved the trans-Pacific shipping challenge. Getting merchandise from warehouses to customers’ homes could be an equally tricky challenge amid one of the worst labor shortages in the US in half a century. The internet and the airways are covered with advertisements for jobs in the company’s warehouses, costing $15 an hour to start and health benefits on day one. Amazon employees in online chat rooms say they can earn more than their supervisors thanks to excessive overtime, while others fear being burned out by the crushing demand. Even those who don’t like the job are forced to stay during the holidays to qualify for bonuses.

The mom-and-pop delivery drivers who now handle most of Amazon’s deliveries in the US are also struggling to hire and retain drivers who, faced with the company’s lofty demands, abandon their vehicles mid-shift. and stop. If delivery drivers can’t keep up, Amazon can rely on its Flex network of drivers, who transport packages in their own vehicles. Flex drivers have boasted of earning $40 to $50 an hour, up from the usual rate of about $18. It’s a sign that Amazon is willing to pay whatever it takes to ease the strain on its delivery business. .

“Amazon will stick with its guns and bring things to customers,” said David Glick, a former Amazon logistics director who is now chief technology officer at Seattle logistics startup Flexe. “It will be expensive, but in the long run it builds customer trust.”



Storm Barra: Yellow weather warning for ‘heavy snow’ and wind in Scotland




Storm Barra: Yellow weather warning for 'heavy snow' and wind in Scotland

LARGE parts of mainland Scotland have received another yellow weather warning for ‘heavy snow’ and high winds.

Just as the north of Scotland begins to recover from Storm Arwen that has left thousands of homes without power, another yellow wind warning has been issued on the country’s east coast.

Possible winds of up to 70mph could ravage the coast of Scotland, putting another chance of ‘a short-term loss of power and other services’.

A separate yellow warning has also been issued for a large part of the mainland of the country.

Up to 10cm of snow is expected in local areas in the Scottish Highlands, as well as the strong south east, which can lead to poor road visibility.

Both warnings are in effect from 9:00 AM and 11:00 AM Tuesday morning and will last all day and evening until midnight.

There is a possibility of travel delays on roads with some vehicles and passengers stranded, and the impending extreme weather has prompted Traffic Scotland to issue a warning to those planning to drive on Tuesday.

A statement from the Met Office said: “A streak of rain will turn to snow in northern England and Scotland through Tuesday.

“It is expected that 2-5cm will accumulate quite broadly throughout the area, but can reach 10cm locally, especially in parts of the Southern Highlands and Highlands.

“Strong southeast winds will also cause snow to drift in some places, particularly on the highest routes, contributing to poor visibility.

“Wind gusts of 45-50 mph are widely expected, with 60-70 mph at exposed coastal sites. The strongest winds will ease inland during the nighttime period.”

The areas affected for the yellow snow and wind warning are:

Central, Tayside & Fife




Perth and Kinross





SW Scotland, Lothian Borders

Dumfries and Galloway

Midlothian Council

Scottish Borders

West Lothian


Argyll and Bute

East Ayrshire

East Dunbartonshire

East Renfrewshire


North Lanarkshire


South Ayrshire

South Lanarkshire

West Dunbartonshire

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Two classic Carlisle restaurants come together as George’s Pizza buys Scalles and plans to close downtown location | Carlisle




Two classic Carlisle restaurants come together as George's Pizza buys Scalles and plans to close downtown location |  Carlisle

Neither Todd nor Wayne Meals expected Thursday or Friday to be as busy as their signature Carlisle restaurant.

Wayne said Scalles started to get busy around 4:30pm on Thursday and remained busier than usual at lunchtime on Friday.

“There was no end to it. It’s just calmed down now,” he said mid-afternoon on Friday.

The reason? Earlier in the day, Thursday, it spread on social media that Scalles had been sold to the owners of George’s Pizza. That evening, Scalles confirmed the news with a post of his own on Facebook.

Scalles, on York Road and East High Street in Carlisle, is expected to close on December 18 and reopen as “George’s @ Scalles” on January 4.

George’s Pizza will close its downtown location so the two restaurants with a combined 104 years of service can meet in one location, George’s owner Ernie Merisotis said. However, the timeline for the shutdown is uncertain as hundreds of questions are being worked out.

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Merisotis said this is the right move for George’s as it looks set to expand its business.

“Scalles has great food and George’s has great food and you add to the dining room they have that we don’t,” Merisotis said.

Where it's at: One13 Social brings upscale, casual dining to downtown Carlisle on the former Brick site

Todd said the liquor license for the restaurant will be sold separately from the restaurant and the Meals family will retain ownership of the building under a lease with an option to buy.

But locals with a hankering for a blockbuster, sub or one of Scalles’ signature soups can’t live without it. The plan is to keep the Scalles menu and integrate George’s pizza, calzones, stromboli and more.

“You can still get the same things — except alcohol — that are on the Scalles menu,” Merisotis said.

Todd said he would be staying “to make sure the Scalles food is made right,” and Wayne, 82, plans to stay as well.

“It will be important to keep the same to keep the company strong,” Wayne said. “If you change that a lot, you risk losing a lot of the clientele.”

Wayne said that over time the new owners can adjust the menu based on what’s being sold, and as a restaurant owner, he knows all about evolving menus.

Fall food revival: four new restaurants open in downtown Carlisle

scaling history

When Harrisburg Radio Lab left its location on the Harrisburg Pike across from the Army War College, Wayne rented the space to start a restaurant adjacent to his wife’s beauty salon. That was in 1980.

Wayne said the restaurant’s name came from the original idea of ​​letting people build their own subs. The subs would be placed on a scale and the customer would pay based on that weight. Wayne visited a sub shop in New York based on the same premise, but found there were issues with people building subs that ended up being too heavy and more expensive. That store had abandoned the plan and Wayne did the same.

“We steered clear of that and just went with subs and salads and soup,” he said.

The menu has expanded over the years. A customer would make a suggestion that sounded good or a salesperson would name a new item and Wayne would consider it and sometimes add it to the menu.

In 1983 Wayne bought the old warehouse that now houses the restaurant. Built between 1867-1870 by a Carlisle Iron Works partner, the building was used for grain storage until 1946 when JP Bixler & Sons bought it and used it for storage. In 1973 the building was renovated and converted into a store for wood-burning stoves.

For seven years, other businesses, including a sportswear store, a teen nightclub and an office supply store, operated out of the location. In 1990, the Meals family opened Restaurant Scalles in the warehouse. Wayne said the family operated both the York Road and Harrisburg Pike locations until 1995, when the original store closed.

The warehouse restaurant pays tribute to the history of the venue with its decor using old maps integrated into the table tops.

George’s History

World War II veteran George Merisotis moved from Derry, New Hampshire to Carlisle in 1958, at the urging of Ernest Reisinger, a Carlisle businessman and former naval friend.

George bought the Kruger Dairy store in a deal that closed with a handshake. He lived in a small room at the back of the store whose only possessions were a crib, lamp, and Bible.

The store’s interior has changed over the years, from Bible verses on tiled walls and George’s “office” in a back cubicle to the hundreds of donated photographs of Carlisle residents from several decades that now fill the walls.

Merisotis said those photos won’t be thrown away, but they can be kept for a while while he decides what to do with them.

For now, though, the focus is on creating the best of both worlds by bringing two legendary Carlisle companies together.

Email Tammie at [email protected] Follow her on Twitter @TammieGitt.


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Delhi’s anti-smog guns to tackle air pollution, says government | The Weather Channel – Articles from The Weather Channel




Gurugram installs 71 air purifiers;  Strives to make the district breathable |  The Weather Channel - Articles from The Weather Channel
File photo (Rahul Sharma/BCCL Patna)

file photo

(Rahul Sharma/BCCL Patna)

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has deployed 14 Anti Smog Guns (ASGs) to combat air pollution at metro rail infrastructure sites.

The anti-smog guns throw fine mist from time to time to control the possibility of dust contamination of the construction work.

Currently, as part of the Phase 4 expansion and some other construction projects, 12 civil contracts are operational in the national capital.

These state-of-the-art ASGs can spray fine mist up to 70-100 meters. One ASG is considered sufficient for an area of ​​up to 20,000 square meters.

The DMRC said it ensures that the water used for irrigation is free of coliforms, viruses and bacteria.

“For greater impact, high-performance nozzles with droplet sizes from 10 to 50 micrometers are used. With the gradual expansion of construction work, more such ASGs will be introduced to the sites in the coming days,” it said.

The Delhi government imposed a ban on construction and demolition activities in the city in November due to rising air pollution.

“Currently, all construction works, except those that are non-polluting in nature, have been halted in accordance with the relevant guidelines. While the DMRC ensures that all instructions regarding pollution are fully adhered to, these fog guns have been installed as a permanent measure to are used at the sites all year round.Even when there is no construction work going on, Mist Guns prevent the loose soil/soil stored at construction sites from being released into the air, reducing air pollution,” it added.

Traditionally, anti-smog guns have been used in coal and cement factories around the world.

In November 2016, DMRC may have been the first construction company in the National Capital Region to use the ASGs at its sites as a pilot project.

Based on the feedback from the first use of ASGs at the sites, their use was made mandatory in the contract terms for civil contractors in the fourth expansion phase of DMRC.

Even the Delhi government has now mandated the use of ASGs for all construction firms in the national capital to combat pollution.

In this regard, detailed guidelines have also been issued regarding the use of water drops, nozzles.

It is clear that all of northern India, especially the Delhi NCR, struggles with the threat of severe pollution from October to December.


The above article was published by a news agency with minimal changes to the headline and text.

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