COLUMBUS, Ohio — In response to the collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge, the state of Maryland and the Department of Transportation announced that the shipping lane to the port of Baltimore will be closed until further notice.

What You Need To Know

  • The port of Baltimore is closed indefinitely

  • The bridge collapse will have a minimal impact on the auto supply chain industry

  • The bridge is expected to take about five years to rebuild

Several companies are working to reroute their ships as a result of the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapse, however consumers could see a short-term impact on the availability of goods like cars and car parts. 

The port of Baltimore handles the most auto cargo in the country. According to port data, the Maryland channel saw around 750,000 vehicles come through in 2022. Ohio is one of the top five markets for the auto industry and is home to big auto plants like General Motors and Ford. 

Several auto giants are already working on a backup plan for their cargo and said that impact should be minimal. Kevin Chambers, the managing director for logistics distribution at JobsOhio, said that the supply chain industry learned a lot from the pandemic, and that has helped their response plan. 

“As long term plans are put together, I think we'll see a much faster reaction than we were able to have during COVID and throughout other shipping disruptions, " Chambers said. “I think there'll be some gaps in parts and some gaps in vehicle inventory, but I don't think that those will have any significant impact on Ohioans at this time.”

Baltimore officials have said that it should take weeks, maybe months, to get traffic through the port back up and running. However, it's expected to take about five years to get the bridge back up and running.