For transport companies, freight is a common thing. Despite the qualifications and requirements for drivers and freight forwarders, there are cases of damage to cargo. What is it and how to ensure against it? Where does the area of responsibility of the driver, shipper, and consignee begin and end? Not all trucking companies know the answers to these questions.
First, let’s denote the concept of damage. Damage to cargo is the partial or complete loss of cargo of its original properties and qualities.
Despite the caution of carriers, freight forwarding is always associated with the risk of damage to the transported products. But it’s not always their fault.
Causes of Cargo Damage
The main reason leading to damage is non-compliance with the proposed rules and recommendations for the transportation of goods. That is why, if you move to college or any other place, it is better to hire professional college movers. Damage can also be inflicted during unloading or loading.
Products of different strengths may be in the same machine, then a fragile object can be broken stronger. Therefore, such goods are advised to transport only separately. Sometimes the load can be damaged due to being improperly packed and poorly secured.
The result of cargo transportation can be affected by the temperature regime, even with working refrigeration units, the goods may deteriorate. And these are just some reasons for the damage to the cargo during transportation.
Types of Damage
All mechanical damage can occur due to the following actions:
- weather conditions, storms, storms, natural disasters;
- non-compliance with the required transportation temperature;
- full or partial theft of cargo;
- negligent performance of obligations by the transport company.
The final recipient cannot influence these situations in any way but can insure the cargo, which compensates for losses in case of damage to the order.
Extra Threat: Moving in Winter
Moving in the winter is different from moving at other times of the year. In winter, temperatures and road conditions impose their restrictions on city trips. No wonder they recommend, if possible, postponing their plans to a warmer time. But if you can’t wait, the piece of advice you’ll read in this article is not to save money on relocation services.
So, preparing for the winter move requires more time, attention, and a mandatory plan. Therefore, you need to start training in advance – 1-2 weeks before the expected date.
Assembly-disassembly of cabinets, disassembly-assembly of hinged structures, and packaging of materials can be ordered. But there are actions that you have to do yourself.
Outline the Date of Relocation
The difficulty is that the weather forecast can let you down. On the other hand, it is the forecast that needs to be guided. You should choose a day that will not be heavy snow or rain and minimal frost.
It is better to plan winter transportation in early December or late winter (late February-first half of March). During these periods, there is almost no frost and little snow. Therefore, the risk of injury is less. But if you need to move in January, you will have to take additional precautions.
Make sure the date of the trip can be postponed as needed. Wet rain with frost is a terrible time not only for driving but also for walking the streets. Therefore, the transport company should provide a transfer option, and you should keep this in mind.
Procedure in Case of Damage to the Cargo
Let’s understand which of the parties and what to do in such a situation.
Carrier: the carrier is responsible for the cargo until it is delivered to the consignee. If he believes that he is not at fault for the damage, he may disagree in writing with the content of the inspection reports.
Consignee: must record in detail what and how severe damage the goods received. It is necessary to take photos and videos, noting this in the transport documents.
Sender: the cargo must be checked for integrity at delivery and not postponed. This is the only way to further prove that the damage occurred during transportation. Any signs of damage should be recorded with the participation of the carrier. If there is any doubt about the reliability of the fixation, an independent evaluation expert should be involved to prepare the report.
In the event of damage, whether the driver is responsible for the load is very important. The answer is yes. By signing the documents for the carriage of goods, he automatically assumes responsibility for the receipt, delivery, and unloading. And must be present at all these stages.
Forwarder: must be present during the inspection of the goods together with the carrier. If the act is drawn up without a freight forwarder, the document will be invalid. If the packaging is damaged during the acceptance of the goods for transportation, the freight forwarder must record this fact in the invoice.
Insurer: if the cargo was insured, the insurer will have to assess the possibility of restoring the cargo. The amount of compensation directly depends on the factors that caused the damage.
What to Do if the Carrier Has Damaged the Cargo?
Often the damage to the goods occurs during their transportation. The transport company is responsible for this. Despite this responsibility, a contract is usually required for transportation. It prescribes the area of responsibility of the carrier. Therefore, before giving the goods, you need to study the document.
When the shipper receives the sender himself, his task is to meticulously inspect the goods because to sign the receipt without comments – means to get rid of any further consideration. You have already agreed that the packaging is intact and undamaged.
If you forget who is responsible for the cargo during transportation, remember – the transport company, unless otherwise specified in the contract.
Be careful and always check the packaging before shipping, and check even more carefully upon arrival. Disassembly can always be turned to your advantage if you know how the transportation system works.