James Lepp runs a golf shoe and apparel company out of Abbotsford. Normally at this time of year he is gearing up to sell shoes and clothing to golfers eager to hit the links on Spring Break.
But this year, most of his stock is stuck at Port Metro Vancouver due to the truckers’ strike, and there’s nothing he can do about it.
“This is kind of our go-to season,” said Lepp. “The start of it at least.”
“Ideally we would have these products in the golf shops and online.”
Kikkor Golf’s last shipment arrived two days before the non-unionized truck drivers went on strike, about 15 days ago.
For the first week of the strike, Lepp was charged $240 a day for his shipment being held at the port. After seven days, those fees went up to $480 a day.
“It’s not our fault at all and we can’t do anything,” said Lepp.
He said even if they could get on to the port to get their shipment, they have no idea where their container is located. And they have another shipment on the way.
“It’s not good at all, every day we’re getting charged. This container is our business.”
He has even started offering ‘strike pricing’ online so that they can still sell their stock at a discounted price and then ship as soon as the strike is over.
Lepp said he does understand what the truck drivers are fighting for, but he feels the government should step in and do something. “I think there’s a lot of blame that could be pointed out,” he said.
“The sad thing is, it affects so many people and so many businesses across Canada.”
The port says 90 per cent of their container truck traffic has been stopped due to the strike.