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International Forwarding Association Blog » Specialized transportation

Specialized transportation

Oversized Cargo Transportation Challenges That Forwarders Face

Transporting oversized cargo presents a diverse set of challenges that require comprehensive planning. These challenges encompass damage risk during transit, regulatory and compliance issues, pricing complications, and the need for customized logistics solutions.   Damage during Transit The irregular size and weight of oversized cargo make it susceptible to damage during loading, unloading, and transit. Delicate machinery, in particular, may suffer structural harm or internal damage if not properly handled. To mitigate these risks, freight forwarders employ a variety of risk management strategies. For instance, they may conduct thorough cargo inspections before and after transportation. Here, they can use advanced… Read more

Commonly Shipped Goods That May Present Safety Hazards

There are some types of cargo that can present potential safety hazards and should be subject to risk assessment before shipping. Such items may contain mercury, gases under pressure, or hazardous chemicals that bear health and safety risks if they spill, break, drop, or come in contact with another substance.   What Items Are Considered Hazardous Hazardous items range from ordinary goods like nail polish, liquor, and hair spray to dangerous substances such as toxic materials and gases. Toxic and infectious substances, for instance, include items carrying fungi, viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens, that can cause harm, injury, or death…. Read more

Types of Oversized Cargo and Shipping Options

The oversized cargo includes items that are non-standard and extra-large and cannot be transported in standard containers. It covers different types of cargo that vary in technical characteristics, weight, and dimensions, including construction and special equipment, agricultural machinery, and watercraft and aircraft.   Agricultural Machinery Depending on the destination and type of machinery, agricultural equipment can be shipped by RO/RO vessels, charter and air freight services, break bulk vessels, flat racks, and deck trailers. Machinery with tracks or wheels can be transported by RO/RO ships provided that it is operational and clean. RO/RO vehicles ship both towable and self-propelled equipment… Read more

Specialized Equipment by Cargo Type

Modes of Transportation and Specialized Equipment by Cargo Type

The main types of cargo include livestock, foodstuff, liquid and dry bulk cargo, machinery and equipment, vehicles, and crude oil. Depending on type, a different mode of transportation and vessel is used. When choosing how to ship commodities, carriers take different risks and hazards into account, including fungal and bacterial growth, spoilage of foodstuff, fire, and volatile behavior. Foodstuff This category includes a variety of items that may or may not require refrigeration transport, including partially processed, fresh, frozen, and packaged goods. As a rule, foodstuff is challenging to ship due to the short shell life of goods and the… Read more

Oversized Cargo

Shipping Oversized Cargo, Modes, Challenges, and Considerations

Oversized loads cover a wide range of freight that differs in terms of dimensions, weight, and technical characteristics. Shipping of heavyweight items is more challenging than transporting standard-sized cargo due to their dimensions and the fact they are subject to special regulations. There are many things to account for, from freight specifics and optimal delivery route to challenges and problems with transport. Types of Oversized Loads There is a variety of freight types that are categorized as oversized cargo, including industrial machinery such as large engines, bulldozers, and cranes and vehicles such as trucks and cars. Steel structures and beams… Read more

Transporting Live Fish

Transporting Live Fish Internationally

There are different ways of transporting live fish but where it is shipped is an important consideration. You should not only check whether there are fees and customs charges but also if you can legally ship fish to the place of destination and across borders. You may have to apply for an import permit, and there may be quarantine periods for some types of aquarium fish. Factors to Account for Climate is always an important factor as well as weather at the place of origin and destination. Extreme temperatures can affect fish, especially when it sits at a post office… Read more

Cold Chain Regulations

Cold Chain Regulations and Standards around the World

The cold chain is key to preserving food and reducing the risk of foodborne illness. Stakeholders around the world, including researchers, standard-setting agencies, regulators, and industry leaders agree on the importance of ensuring food safety during transit. Food laws aim to incorporate safety best practices in line with changes in distribution, technical innovation, and knowledge. Yet, legislation varies widely from one country to another when it comes to food standards and public health protection. Customs Requirements and Shipping Regulations Subject to customs formalities in the destination of arrival, forwarders and individual customers may need a permit by a food governing… Read more

Ship Perishable Cargo

Reefers Used to Ship Perishable Cargo

Refrigerated containers or reefers are used to ship perishable goods such as flowers, dairy products, meat, seafood, and fruits and vegetables. Carriers also use temperature-controlled containers to transport frozen and chilled goods, photographic film, and pharmaceuticals. If not shipped at appropriate humidity and temperature, such cargo might spoil quickly during transit.   Reefer Design Reefers have one or more temperature chambers and a generator to maintain the right temperature regardless of weather conditions. Depending on the type of cargo, the temperature ranges from – 35 °C to 35 °C. As they are used for refrigeration transport, cooling gets done during… Read more

What Is Causing EU’s Vaccine Supply Shortage

The EU recently threatened to impose export controls on Covid-19 vaccines manufactured in Europe. This move came after AstraZeneca announced a significant reduction in the number of dozes it could deliver by March. As a result, a political crisis followed, with debates to block the export of vaccines to the North. In case the bloc decides to trigger the emergency provision, the new regulation would also require that pharmaceutical manufacturers report the destination and quantity of exports, enabling states to block vaccine flows. While the EU reversed its decision to impose controls, the question that begs to be answered is… Read more

Global Vaccine Delivery Efforts and Challenges Ahead

With vaccines being developed and approved for use in the hope to protect billions around the world, countries are facing a formidable challenge – distributing hundreds of millions of doses requiring ultra-cold shipping. The near-simultaneous delivery of millions of jabs not only requires significant production capabilities but also puts pressure on logistics businesses engaged in distribution.Challenges That Lie Ahead The world is already facing a shortage of shipping resources, especially when it comes to refrigeration transport. One problem is that refrigerated truck and air cargo carriers are in high demand that already exceeds supply. Another is that carriers are tasked… Read more

Logistics Capabilities for Covid-19 Vaccine Delivery and Distribution

Billions of vaccine doses have to be shipped to inoculate the world in 2021 – 2022 but for forwarders, shots are just a small percentage of cargo to be carried over the next couple of months. In fact, logistics companies say they are prepared to handle shipments despite challenges like transporting shots in special boxes fitted with GPS trackers as to monitor whether sub-sub-zero temperatures are maintained. Vaccine doses are already delivered to Switzerland, Brazil, the United States, and the Middle East.Logistics Capabilities Fewer than 100,000 trucks will be needed to transport 8 billion shots, which is about 0.00001 percent… Read more

Guidelines for Shipping Harmless and Hazardous Fertilizers

Fertilizers are cargo that has major importance for agricultural produce around the world. In fact, research shows that about 60 percent of the increase in production during the last decades has been due to the use of fertilizers. With population growth, need is constantly increasing, and they are exported and imported by various countries across the globe. Here is a brief intro to the main fertilizers shipped by international freight forwarders as well as the specifics in terms of discharging and loading.Types of Exports The main fertilizers that are shipped as bulk cargo include sulphur, phosphates, potash, and urea. Major… Read more

EU Regulations regarding the Carriage of Dangerous Goods

Directive 2008/68/EC on the inland transport of dangerous goods governs the shipping of cargo by inland waterways, rail, and road. European logistics companies must comply with the directive’s provisions to meet the safety criteria for international and domestic shipments.  Scope The directive includes provisions regarding labelling, requirements for tank-containers, restrictions on grounds of safety, and third countries. The shipping of hazardous cargo between third countries and EU Member States is permitted subject to the provisions of ADN, RID, and ADR, concerning the movement of dangerous cargo by inland waterways, rail, and road, respectively. When it comes to restrictions on grounds… Read more

EU Guidelines on the Carriage of Oversized Cargo

EU guidelines specify the maximum dimensions and weights when shipping abnormal loads. Cargo that exceeds the specified limits requires special permits which are issued by national or regional authorities. The procedures and regulations regarding the issuance of permits vary by country, including details such as authorized speeds, time frames, and vehicle escorts. Nevertheless, the guidelines include useful recommendations on vehicle information, transport corridors, and more.EU Best Practice Guidelines The best practice guidelines have been developed and released by the Directorate-General for Energy and Transport of the European Commission. There contain provisions regarding escorts, lighting and marking of load and vehicles,… Read more

Guidelines for Transporting Covid-19 Samples to Reference Laboratories

The World Health Organization has developed a mechanism for transporting clinical samples from suspected coronavirus patients residing in countries that lack specialized Covid-19 laboratories and testing capacity. Local shipping agents working with WHO-approved couriers provide assistance to laboratories in completing export documentation, arranging sample collection, and providing all forms, labelling, and packaging under international transport regulations. This mechanism for transporting hazardous goods and biological substances is similar to the Shipping Fund Project and Global Influenza Surveillance and Response System.Services Offered by Reference Laboratories WHO-approved reference laboratories support efforts toward capacity building in middle- and lower-income countries so that local laboratories… Read more

General and Special Cargo and Biological Substances Carried by Aircraft

The main types of air freight in Europe are general and special cargo, the latter being shipped in accordance with the IATA Live Animals Regulations and IATA Dangerous Goods Regulations. General Cargo This category includes electronics, hardware and machinery, consumer and retail goods, and textiles. In general, all items that are not liquid fall in this category.Special Cargo A number of sub-classes are included, among which fragile and high value items, oversized cargo and heavy weight, and dangerous goods and hazardous materials. Dangerous goods transported by aircraft include arms and ammunition, weapons, and explosives. Valuable items that can be shipped… Read more

Safe Shipping of Medical Supplies Aiding the Fight against the Global Pandemic

Shipping medical supplies and equipment safely and quickly has become key to preventing the further spread of Covid-19 and compensating shortages in many countries. The proper packing of medical equipment is important, especially for non-standard and fragile items and when specialized transportation is required. Types of Medical Equipment and Supplies Medical supplies that are shipped to protect frontline healthcare workers include disposable gloves, N95 respirators, surgical masks, gowns, and foot and eye protection. Equipment is also shipped, including bulky devices such as X-Ray scans, MRI machines, ECG, and ultrasound. The World Health Organization also published a list of priority equipment… Read more

Regulations on Shipping Pets and Domesticated Animals Internationally

Many ask freight forwarders if they can safely ship pets internationally as this can be a stressful experience for cats, dogs, and ferrets. Depending on final destination, some countries allow pets after a quarantine period while others may not allow them at all. EU Member States also have special requirements when it comes to required information, vaccinations, and other specifics. Specialized transportation may also be required for some domestic animals, including road and air shipping. What Documents Are Required If you plan to import pets from non-EU states, they must come from authorized countries and territories. State authorities require an… Read more

Shipping Requirements and Types of Transport for Fish Products

Freight forwarders often transport fish products across Europe, including dried, salted, live, and fresh fish. Factors they need to account for include type of product, distance, and transportation costs. Products and Shipping Requirements Fresh Fish Different factors play a role when transporting preserved and fresh fish. Fresh fish must be shipped to a distribution or holding facility as quickly and cost-effectively as possible. The goal is to deliver high quality, fresh products that meet consumer expectations. Some species require additional processing such as cooling, packing, and canning but the period from catching fish to delivery is important to preserving quality…. Read more

The Role of Logistics in the Healthcare Sector

While healthcare has treatment and prevention as its main focus, hospitals, clinics, and other facilities need medications, syringes, gauzes, and other supplies to treat patients. Hospitals also need files, paper, computers, and other items for administrative purposes and keeping record of patients and treatment outcomes. How Hospitals Secure Supplies The two main ways in which hospitals secure supplies are by working with distributors and by buying directly from manufacturers. Purchasing supplies from distributors has many benefits, the main one being that they are able to ship multiple supplies. To this, logistics services providers cater to both large and small shipments… Read more