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When should I use a common carrier?
When your item weighs more than 150 lbs., truck transportation is more economical than using a parcel service. Common carriers transport your item on a truck with additional small shipments so that the costs for transportation are shared. If your shipment weighs more than 8,000 lbs, you may need an entire truck (or have a Truckload shipment).

Standard procedure for common carriers involves a truck driver backing up to a dock to be loaded by the consignor (shipper), and driving the cargo to the receiving destination to be unloaded by the consignee. Any service that isn’t considered “standard procedure” may require additional fees.

Are transit times guaranteed?
Transit times are guaranteed only if noted as such on the carrier options list returned for your quote. All other transit times are reliable, but not guaranteed. Transit times do not include the day of pickup, weekends or holidays.

What happens if my shipment isn’t ready when the driver comes?
Most commonly, the driver will not wait. The driver will be dispatched for the following day, which delays your service. You will be assessed a fee if the carrier charges DCI for the duplicated pickup.

Can I estimate the weight of my shipment?
If an inaccurate weight or class is used and a shipment is reweighed or re-classed by the carrier, those costs may be passed on to you. Reweighing may also delay delivery.

What is the claims process?
Claims are handled directly between the shipper, consignee and the carrier. DCI is not involved in the actual claims process and has no influence in the carrier’s claim decision. Claims with the carrier must be filed within 90 days of delivery. The claimant should only file for loss or damage on the product which was shipped. ALWAYS be as concise as possible in noting specific damage on the delivery receipt. DCI provides a time/date stamped communication forum and claim forms. DCI will be happy to coach you on your wording for the claim.

What should I do with the Bill of Lading?
All parties involved should have a copy of the Bill of Lading (buyer, seller and carrier). It is imperative that the BOL be given to the truck driver when he makes the pickup. Keep one copy for your records.

How should I package my shipments?
Please package, crate or stack on pallets securely to prevent damage. Secure cartons to the pallet with banding, shrink-wrap, stretch-wrap or breakaway adhesive. Improper packaging may void the carrier’s liability for damage. Stack cartons squarely on the skid with no overhang. Be sure the top surface is flat. Labels must be placed on every piece or package.

Can I schedule a shipment and have it picked up on the same day?
Yes, but this service cannot be guaranteed due to our carriers’ capacity. Please allow a 2-hour window before your docks close so DCI can get a driver dispatched out to your location within that same day. Please note that carriers normally make pickups in the afternoon and deliver in the morning.

What is a NMFC number?
This is a numeric indicator that specifically identifies each type of product that can be shipped by a LTL carrier. The National Motor Freight Association presets these product classifications. It is helpful to have the NMFC number on the Bill of Lading in order to avoid re-classification.

What if my items are fragile?
When shipping personal or fragile items, it is best to use Blanket Wrap services (also known as Van Line Services). Freight carriers can move personal items but they will only offer 10 cents per pound in insuring your freight. Van Lines specialize in moving personal items and will offer additional insurance to cover your item’s value. Common carriers are NOT recommended for shipping costly fragile items.

Do fees apply for residential service?
Generally, yes. Your location may be considered a residence if you are located in a residential zone, even if you open and close at set times. Schools, colleges, and churches located in residential zones may also incur residential fees. If the driver is required to go inside (beyond the front door or loading dock) to pickup or deliver a load instead of remaining on the dock or in his truck, additional fees may be applied.

When the shipping or receiving address does not have a loading dock, manual loading or unloading is necessary, and will require a liftgate. A liftgate is a platform at the back of the truck that can raise and lower a shipment from the ground to the truck. Additional fees apply for this service.

Are your rates guaranteed?
DCI has accounts set up with regional and national carriers based on our ability to give them a large volume of shipments. To ensure that you receive the DCI rate that we have quoted, you must provide the driver with a copy of the DCI BOL. This lets the carrier know to bill the shipment on the DCI account at the discounts we have negotiated.

What happens if I receive a bill directly from a carrier?
Simply call our customer service department at 800.315.9878 and fax a copy of the bill you received. Our customer service staff will be happy to take care of it and have the charges properly credited. This situation usually occurs when the DCI BOL is not used. To prevent future problems, please make sure that the shipper gives the driver a copy of the automated DCI BOL for every shipment.

What is dimensional weight?
Dimensional weight is a standard formula used throughout the freight industry that considers a package’s density when determining charges. Transportation charges are based on the gross weight of the shipment or the dimensional weight of the shipment; whichever is greater. Simply put, dimensional weight is when the weight of a package is inappropriately less than the actual size of the package. For example, a box filled with inflated balloons.

When do dimensional weight charges apply?
When the actual weight of a package is less than the calculated dimensional weight, carriers charge by the dimensional weight.

What should be on the BOL?

You will need to have the shipper and consignee information as well as the bill to. The other things that need to be on the BOL for accurate invoicing are freight, complete and accurate description, class, and NMFC#.

What should I do if I don't know the class of my freight?

If you don't know the class of the freight you are shipping you should call your associate or your account manager for assistance.


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Last Updated on Saturday, 16 March 2013 08:13

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