Harriet Mills

Recent Posts

Market Report: The Logistics of a Pandemic

Posted by Harriet Mills on Mar 25, 2020 2:15:00 PM

FREIGHT MARKET & THE PANDEMIC

Looking at the freight market in Q1 of 2020 is much like watching the new season of Ozark on Netflix; it first requires a brief look at what came before. My personal binge-watching policy dictates that before diving into a new season, I do a quick recap of the last two episodes to get the full impact of what is going on now.

So, let’s review what was happening at the close of 2019 in the freight industry. Everyone summed up the year by comparing it to the bull market of 2018, with slight resignation but hopefulness. The overriding sentiment was that even though the market in 2019 paled in comparison to the previous year, the industry was still experiencing growth, and we had 2020 to catch up. 

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Tags: Shipper News, Truck Rates, truckload freight shipping, Shipping Truckload, 3PL News

Food Safety & the Coronavirus Pandemic

Posted by Harriet Mills on Mar 6, 2020 10:58:03 AM

With more than 570,000 confirmed cases of the Coronavirus in the U.S. in mid-April, there are questions about the safety of everything and anything manufactured overseas. Since it is believed that the virus began in the open food markets of China's Wuhan province, imported foods are on the minds of the masses.

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Tags: Shipper News, truckload freight shipping

Truckload Shipping 101: The Basics

Posted by Harriet Mills on Feb 13, 2020 11:07:01 AM

...plus everything you need to know to get a competitive truckload freight rate

What Defines a Full Truckload?

There are different kinds of truckload shipments and services, such as cold or dry truckload shipments, flatbed freight and heavy haul truckload shipping. A full truckload (FTL) is characterized by filling either a 53’ or 48’ trailer containing one shipment going from point A to point B, or it can be a multi-stop load which will add costs. It can range from 24 – 30 pallets or more. The amount of space the cargo takes up can be more important than the weight of a truckload shipment. (Learn more about freight optimization and capacity utilization reporting in Choptank's new customer portal, Orbit TI®.) Weights can vary from 5,000 pounds all the way up to 45,000 pounds, the latter being a more common full truckload weight.

 

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Tags: Freight costs, truckload freight shipping, FTL, Shipping Truckload

Shipping flowers by the truckload for Valentine's Day

Posted by Harriet Mills on Feb 6, 2020 1:43:46 PM

It’s the flower shippers who deserve the love on Valentine’s Day!

Most people have no idea what those beautiful flowers go through to get to you. The ones that wind up on coffee tables and office desks across the U.S. -- it’s not just a stroll down from the local flower shop. Oh, no. It is more likely that those beautiful buds have traveled thousands of miles, through various temperature zones, over bumpy roads and border crossings, to get to you.

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Tags: Shipper News, Nursery

Truck Rates Rising in 2020

Posted by Harriet Mills on Jan 9, 2020 9:13:03 AM

2019 was the year of the shipper. Truck rates were low, freight volumes were a shadow of their former selves, and capacity was high. Trucks were so plentiful that the term “capacity crunch,” a common phrase in 2018, was rarely heard. The market did not favor the carrier.     

2020, however, is positioned to be a year fraught with a whole new list of challenges for both carriers and shippers, including changes to hours of service, pending regulations like the Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse, California’s AB5 legislation, and AOBRDs’ final gasp, all of which could result in higher truck rates and fewer trucks on the road.

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Tags: Truck Rates, Freight costs, HR3781

Market Report 2019 Year End

Posted by Harriet Mills on Dec 23, 2019 12:47:08 PM

2019 was a Shipper’s Market

Record truck orders and record freight volumes in 2018 served as the backdrop for a significant correction to the market in 2019. The year began with a plethora of trucks and freight volumes underperforming expectations. It is estimated that there are approximately 75,000 more tractors available than there is freight to fill them.1 Shipments became easier to cover, and as a result, carrier rates were historically low. Even though economic growth continued in an upward trajectory, it was at a much slower pace than the previous year and not enough to compensate for the overabundance of equipment.

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Tags: Shipper News, Industry News, Market Report

Tips for Avoiding Cargo Theft this Holiday

Posted by Harriet Mills on Dec 6, 2019 11:01:19 AM

Cargo theft is an unfortunate by-product of the holiday season that often gets overlooked during the hustle and bustle of rushed shipments and tight delivery schedules. That is until a trailer disappears, or pallets go missing off the company’s loading dock. With employees taking extra vacation days around Christmas and New Year’s, freight is often unattended or stored in places where prolonged absences provide a greater opportunity for theft.

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Tags: Carrier News, Shipper News, Industry News

Why Haven't LTL Rates Dropped Alongside TL?

Posted by Harriet Mills on Nov 22, 2019 10:26:11 AM

And what you can do about mitigating LTL costs ... 

LTL rates have remained high since the freight recession hit in Q4 of 2018, and to some, this is hard to understand. Conventional wisdom says that when market pricing for truckload shipments rises, so does Less-than-truckload (LTL) pricing.  Conversely, when truckload pricing dips, so should LTL, but we are beginning to see a shift in the industry that is far from normal.

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Tags: Shipper News, Cold LTL, Dry LTL

Total Tracking Makes Choptank the Better Choice

Posted by Harriet Mills on Nov 13, 2019 3:04:24 PM

Offering Customers Something More ... 

“The recent freight recession has affected the freight industry in a number of ways, making it critical for companies to maintain more direct communications, streamline processes and gain greater visibility in order to remain successful. Largely driven by excess capacity in the market, freight recessions signal a time for brokers to step up their offerings and deliver a true competitive advantage to the market to separate themselves from the competition.” - Freightwaves webinar: The Battle of the Broker: How the Freight Recession Has Impacted the Broker Market

Differentiation

There are over 20,000 freight brokers in the United States. Differentiation can be difficult when every 3PL likes to claim excellent pricing, communication, customer service, and the ability to track shipments. If you are a freight broker and don’t provide those key benefits for all your services, chances are you won’t be for long.   

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Tags: Company News, Shipper News, Industry News

Being a Broker of Choice - What carriers look for in a broker

Posted by Harriet Mills on Oct 30, 2019 4:36:08 PM

Being a "Broker of Choice"

Choptank Transport recently conducted a carrier survey from which 300 for-hire truckers in the supply chain responded. The survey delved into how carriers perceive the value that 3PLs offer, including their thoughts on pricing, service, courteousness, and clear communication.

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Tags: Carrier News, Industry News