Like the Pilgrims centuries ago, your freight has finally completed its long voyage across the ocean. Thankfully, the hard part is over, right? Not so fast. Carriers are currently facing a multitude of challenges that make container drayage a difficult task. You don't want things to go sour on the final leg of the journey, take these potential complications into consideration when planning the transportation of your containers:
Tolls - Transporting containers from certain ports can incur expensive tolls, especially if you're transporting over state lines. The savings gained from shipping into a particular port may become a moot point if your carrier is racking up tolls on the way out. Even if the port is closer to your destination, it may not be worth the added cost in tolls. A good transportation partner will steer you away from making the wrong decision.
Overweight containers - The general rule for gross allowable cargo weight for a 40 container is 44,000 lbs., which would make the gross vehicle weight over 80,000 lbs. Anything over this is considered overweight and your carrier will require a permit to legally transport the container. While the permits come with added costs, if you use an unpermitted carrier you face the serious risk of hefty fines. These overweight restrictions can vary by state which can only further complicate getting your cargo to the right place legally.
Congestion - Traffic slows down your carriers and can add costs to your container's journey, including demurrage fees from the steamship line. Unfortunately, in some areas of the country there's no escaping traffic congestion. There are also equipment shortages that have created an extended wait time for the chassis required to transport containers. It's best to plan far in advance so your containers have enough time to arrive at their destination before the product is needed to fulfill orders.
Relationship with your warehouse - If your carrier is delayed because of traffic, will your warehouse still accommodate them? Will the relationship between the carrier and the warehouse allow for pre-appointed inbounds, drop trailers, pre-pulling, and waived fees for dentition and bobtail fees? (See our flyer to learn more about the benefits of our relationship with our sister company, Tyler Distribution)
At Continental Logistics, we've built up our carrier-base to manage the challenges of port container drayage across the US for our clients. Once the initial hype of a new product has slowed down, the product will only remain appealing to customers if they can have it when they want it, and a major aspect of a timely supply chain is making sure the initial entry of product into the country goes as smoothly as possible. If you're struggling with container drayage or any other transportation related woes contact us today.
Ports serviced by Continental Logistics: