There are many potential hazards that cause damage to freight including bumps in the road, packaging fails, and even improper placement. Customers can help minimize potential damage to their freight if they package their freight correctly. This is an important step to not only keep freight safer but also to help minimize costs and save time overall.
Use a Pallet
A pallet is a stable platform used to transport freight more securely. Most people recognize wood pallets, but they can also be made of metal or plastic. This is the most common way to move freight because it is sturdy, easy to stack in trucks, and made for transportation with a forklift. On top of the pallet, packages of various volumes are stacked for easier transportation. There is a technique to using a pallet correctly, such as:
- Stack securely. Intentionally place items in a way that they won’t fall over. Know your limits on how high to stack and make sure everything is strapped down and secure.
- Distribute the weight. Cargo has all different weights and sizes. Spread the weight out so that the overall weight of the pallet is even. One side being heavier will result in a higher risk of tipping over and risk of injury for the handlers.
- Keep it in a square. Freight costs are determined by freight volume using dimensions. Stack cargo keeping all edges of the boxes within the dimensions of the pallet. Having corners sticking out over the edge can result in damage and a higher shipping cost.
- Label everything. Once the cargo is on the pallet and secured, label your goods with any extra information clearly and in the most visible way. If there are fragile items, indicate it so that the warehouses and freight crews know to treat the freight with extra care.
When freight is all packaged correctly, it helps protect your items from damage, but it also helps reduce the risk of injuring your team, the shipping team, and your customers from unstable loads and jagged surfaces.
Saving Time and Money
When freight is packaged correctly, it can save your business time and money, two things businesses really value. Damaged freight can result in time lost to arrange replacement orders, which slows down your business. Rather than moving the freight on to another stop, putting items on your shelves, or fulfilling your orders, you must wait for the replacement order to arrive. Another bit of time is required for dealing with unhappy customers or others in the supply chain waiting for those items to arrive.
No one likes throwing money away. When freight is not properly packaged and items are damaged, it costs more money to replace those things and pay more to have them shipped again. Additional costs can occur too if there are warehousing needs and disposal costs. These items can all eat into a budget, decreasing the profits. If it happens too often, it can jeopardize potential future deals, further affecting profits.
Improving the Packaging
Whether you have had problems with damaged freight or not, review your current packaging practices. Are there changes that can help warehouse employees or shipping companies to decrease costs and reduce the risks of damage? If you have any questions about your packaging, always feel free to ask. No one likes damaged freight, wasting time and money, or causing injuries.