Longshoremen Strike Averted Mediator says talks will continue for 30 days By John Johnson, Newser Staff Posted Dec 28, 2012 11:19 AM CST 16 comments Comments A shipping container is placed on a tractor trailer at the Port of Boston in this file photo. (AP Photo/Steven Senne) (Newser) – At least we avoided the longshoremen cliff, for now. A federal mediator says 14,500 workers at ports along the East Coast and Gulf of Mexico will not be striking on Sunday as feared, reports AP. The International Association of Longshoremen still hasn't agreed to a new contract with shipping companies and port operators, but enough progress has been made that members have agreed to keep talking for 30 days. A strike would deal a huge economic blow to retailers and manufacturers.