The West Coast maritime industry is a huge engine for the U.S. economy, directly employing tens of thousands of local workers at the docks while paving the way for millions of jobs around the nation.

Its success is linked to its geographic position linking the production centers of Asia with the vast, while also providing departure points for U.S.goods to be shipped overseas.

The industry itself has undergone significant changes in recent years, spurred by the introduction of technology that has made cargo movement more efficient, safer and more environmentally friendly.

The pages in this section detail the industry’s economic impact; the benefits and wages available to the workforce; the assessments system that funds those benefits; and the matters of worker safety, port security and the environment.