How does civil unrest in South Africa impact shipments? 

South African trade comes under huge pressure as they face civil unrest and extended lockdown. President Cyril Ramaphosa has extended the country’s level 4 lockdown for an additional two weeks, and civil unrest across the country raises serious concerns for the people as well as shipments.

Impact of the civil unrest on transport
Rina Hertog, Country Manager South Africa explains…

Cape Town
remains relatively unaffected, with port and landside operations remaining open – although all locations are on high alert.

The impact of the unrestful behaviour is concentrated at the moment to Durban and Johannesburg: 

  • Durban landside – all depots are closed and transporters have suspended services
  • Durban portside – while the port remains open, operations are severely restricted and at a virtual standstill, given the lack of available staff and equipment 
  • Johannesburg – most depots are closed or in the process of closing and transporters are also suspending services 
  • Port Elizabeth – with sporadic incidents of unrest, depots and trucking remains operational but subject to review. With possible escalation likely, a full suspension of operations is possible


This is a highly volatile situation and places the economy and businesses at great risk.  The safety of our staff, customers and suppliers is of paramount importance to us.  The situation has called for: 

  • Some shipping lines have suspended all road haulage, long and short
  • Transporters, consolidators and shipping line offices are closed in Johannesburg and Durban
  • Hillebrand has closed its Durban office and staff are working from the safety of their homes


Our local team is still working hard to manage shipments during this turbulent time. They and your local Hillebrand contact will keep all customers with orders to/from South Africa updated on the situation.

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