But as container cargo counts mount

That’s a 8.6 percent increase from 185,185 container units posted in September 2014, and becomes the port’s third consecutive month of total cargo volume exceeding 200,000 units.

But as container cargo counts mount, the Virginia Port Authority only generated $102,827 in operating income last month – a major improvement from this time last year, when the port authority was millions of dollars in the red.

Since July 1, the port posted a $4.3 million profit during the first three months of the first quarter of the 2015 fiscal year. That’s up from a $3.4 million loss during the same period last year – stemming six consecutive years of operating losses.

“The heavy volumes and profitability continue, but our delivery service to the motor carriers is not acceptable,” said John Reinhart, Virginia Port Authority CEO and executive director, in a news release. “We are pushing our capacity limits at both Virginia International Gateway (VIG) and Norfolk International Terminals (NIT). We’re already working vessels at Portsmouth Marine Terminal, and that move is designated to provide a measure of relief to VIG and NIT, but our truck gates and service time remain an immediate area of focus.”

In September, truck volume increased 21 percent, with 76,782 containers units being transported by truck last month – 13,359 more containers handled in September 2013.

“As a result, we’re experiencing congestion at our truck gates and increased time turn-times,” Reinhart said. “This is putting a service burden on our motor carriers.”

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