One of the most important, but often overlooked, parts of your transportation supply chain is the safe and secure transport of your goods from Shipper to Receiver. Here are some questions to consider when selecting your carrier partners. What you learn from them may surprise you!
- What is your carrier’s process for vetting drivers?
- How many years of experience do their drivers have?
- How well are their tractor and trailers maintained?
- What is their DOT avoidable accident rate per million miles?
Partnering with a reputable and established carrier can mean the difference between a safe, successful trip and potential disaster. At Landstar we “fish from a different pond” when recruiting drivers. “Our experienced Owner Operators must have at minimum 2 years of safe driving experience to be eligible to join Landstar. They are accountable for pre-trip inspections on each shipment and are required to follow customer specific safety and security SOPs. These best practices have allowed Landstar to maintain an industry leading low accident rate among top national truckload carriers,” says Eric Morton, Key Account Manager at Momentum Transportation, an award-winning Landstar agent.
When selecting a Carrier, the shipment cargo value should also be considered. Not only the dollar amount, but there may also be intellectual property or proprietary information that needs to be protected. The Industry standard for a carrier’s cargo coverage is $100,000 per shipment. If your freight is valued above that, consider having your carrier purchase additional insurance coverage.
Have you ever thought about where the driver hauling your high value cargo take their extended breaks? Or where they park with your shipment while waiting for the day of delivery? Cargo theft is a billion-dollar industry and a huge problem if your carrier does not take security seriously. In the United States, there is a lack of safe overnight parking for truck drivers. Even when a driver can find a safe parking spot, most U.S. Truck Stops and Rest Areas are not secure.
One way to confirm the integrity of your freight is by having a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) that includes seal verification. Standard seals offer very little protection from theft, so we recommend using a bolt seal or a standard seal with a padlock. Carriers should take extra precautions to keep their customers’ freight safe from tampering or theft. At Landstar, we offer customized security solutions for your freight that provides additional layers of security. Here are just some of the safety & security precautions and processes that Momentum Transportation, an award-winning Landstar agent, follows:
- Parking in well- lit areas during breaks
- Back the trailer against a wall or tail-to-tail with another truck to prevent doors from being opened
- Use a bolt seal or padlock for extra protection
- Real time tracking visibility to tractor and trailer location with geo-fencing alerts
- Require the driver to arrive at the shipper with a full tank of gas to avoid stopping for several hundred miles after being loaded
- Keep from scheduling loads with too much idle time between pick-up and delivery
Each customer is unique. Not only are you shipping to and from different locations, but you often have specific requirements from check-in and out processes, hours of operation, to cargo securement and billing requirements. Another way your carrier can provide value is by collaboratively creating SOPs and training processes that not only meet your needs but may also uncover potential safety and security risks that you had not previously recognized.
A detailed SOP provides a guide for operational best practices and is a tool to ensure continuity of service specific to each customer. We recommend working hand-in-hand with your carrier when developing your SOP. At Landstar, our team provides customized SOP’s with the highest standards, setting the foundation for the most secure and safe possible shipment of your cargo.
By focusing daily on safety and security as our top priority, Landstar has saved our customers millions of dollars with improved supply chain operational efficiency and lower claims costs. The security of your shipments should never be in doubt. Get started today at www.landstar-agent.com.
About this blog’s contributors
A team of logistics experts at Momentum Transportation, an award-winning Landstar Agent, contributed to this blog post. Meet the team:
Eric has over 17 years of Transportation experience including 9 years with Momentum Transportation. Eric has vast sales and operational experience with small, medium, and large global enterprise accounts. He helped create and implement Safety, Security, and Best practice procedures with several accounts. Eric holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from the University of Florida.
Becky came to Momentum Transportation 10 years ago with a background in sales and marketing. She has a bachelor’s degree in Business from the University of North Florida. Becky has held various positions within the company, allowing her to grow her expertise in domestic (truckload, LTL, heavy and specialized) and international (ocean and air) logistics. She is currently focused on further developing our mission critical business segment.
Dave brings over 25 years of transportation and supply chain experience to Momentum Transportation. He spent 8 years serving in the armed forces as an Army Logistics and Supply Chain Expert and 15 years as a Regional/National Account Manager for ATS Specialized and Mercer Transportation. Dave currently oversees the pricing and contracting of mission critical accounts and works with project stakeholders across the country. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from Augusta State University.
David brings over 30 years of transportation and supply chain services experience to Momentum Transportation. His sales, marketing and business unit leadership at companies including CSX Transportation, Pacer International and U.S. Xpress, make him the ideal person to lead sales and marketing. He has served as President and Chairman of the Transportation Marketing and Sales Association. He holds an MBA and a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from the University of Florida.