The impact of transportation disruptions on supply

chain performance

Martha C. Wilson


College of Business Administration, California State University, Sacramento 6000 J Street,

Sacaremento, CA 95819-6088, United States

Received 6 January 2004; received in revised form 14 July 2005; accepted 23 September 2005

1. Introduction

The vulnerability of supply chains has undoubtedly received more attention since the attacks on the World

Trade Centers on September 11, 2001, even though supply chains have always been faced with assessing their

vulnerabilities and managing risk. Risks faced by supply chains are quite diverse, arising from sources both

within and external to the supply chain. These include disruptions, delays, information and networking, forecasting,

intellectual property, procurement, customers, inventory, and capacity (Chopra and Sodhi, 2004).

Supply chain disruptions are costly (Hendricks and Singhal, 2005), and we need to understand how a disruption

affects a supply chain in order to develop appropriate strategies for ameliorating the impact. A disruption

is defined as an event that interrupts the material flows in the supply chain, resulting in an abrupt cessation

of the movement of goods. It can be caused by a natural disaster, labor dispute, dependence on a single supplier,

supplier bankruptcy, terrorism, war, and political instability. There are many examples of disruptions resulting

from these types of events. The Kobe earthquake in 1994 left many companies without parts (Yoshiko, 1995);

the northeastern US blackouts in August 2003 adversely affected many businesses (Brooks and Vogel, 2003);

Read this article (See attachment) on the impact of transportation disruptions in a supply chain, and then answer each of the following questions. Cite your resources using APA format. (3-4 pages)

1. How does transportation add value in a supply chain?

2. What are the potential disruptions in transportation?

3. How do the disruptions impact the performance of a supply chain?

4. What are the ways to minimize transportation disruptions?


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