Tanker Vessel Dwell Times

Tankers are the leading vessel type calling at the Nation’s top tonnage ports, carrying liquid bulk commodities such as fuels that accounted for nearly 40 percent of U.S. vessel imports by tonnage in 2022. [1] At these top ports by tonnage, [2] the average tanker vessel dwell time was estimated at 41.0 hours (about 1 day 17 hours) in 2022, up by about 12 minutes from 40.8 hours (about 1 day 17 hours) in 2021. In general, tanker dwell times were taking about 17 percent longer than container vessel dwell times, likely because it takes more time to pump petroleum and crude oil than to lift shipping containers from a vessel of similar size. However, this difference in dwell times is slightly increasing as tanker vessel dwell times have remained consistent while container ship dwell times have increased due to port congestion around container terminals. Since the middle of 2022, tanker vessel dwell times have been mostly static and consistent with the monthly average of 41 hours. [3] Average tanker dwell times for individual ports are shown online Port Profiles.
[1] U.S. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, analysis based upon U.S. Department of Transportation, Census Bureau, USA Trade Online, available at USA Trade Online * Home (census.gov) as of January 2023.
[2] The ports of Cincinnati Northern KY; Huntington Tristate, KY, OH, WV; Mid-Ohio Valley Port, OH and WV; St. Louis Metro Port, IL and MO are located on rivers and may handle primarily liquid bulk barges, which are not equipped with AIS and thus not included in the tanker dwell times.
[3] U.S. Department of Transportation, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, calculated using AIS data from the U.S. Coast Guard’s Nationwide Automatic Identification System (NAIS) archive, processed by U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Coastal and Hydraulics Laboratory, through the AIS Analysis Package (AISAP) software package, as of November 2023.