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What is High and Heavy Cargo?

Published by Joe Webster.

What's in this article?
  1. How to Know If You Have Oversized Cargo, and What To Do About It?
  2. Different Shipping Methods
  3. By sea
  4. By road
  5. By air
  6. By rail
  7. Combination shipping
  8. Challenges With Shipping High and Heavy Cargo
  9. Wrapping Up
What is High and Heavy Cargo?

Shipping oversized cargo can be quite a complex process. There are many factors to consider when moving cargo that is too heavy or too high to fit into a standard shipping container.

Oversized cargo includes bulk items such as large, heavy machinery, specialized equipment (often in the medical industry), or military gear.

From the military field to mining operators to the automotive industry, there are many different sectors that rely on trustworthy shipping companies to move their oversized cargo.

In this guide, we'll look at what is considered oversized cargo. We'll also delve into how you can ship your cargo, the potential issues you may face, and the importance of using a trustworthy and reputable shipping carrier.


How to Know If You Have Oversized Cargo, and What To Do About It?

Cargo is measured by calculating the volume of the item or items.

The equation reads length X width X height = volume.

To determine whether your cargo is too heavy or too high, you need to calculate the volume of your cargo and measure it against the standard container measurements.

To transport your goods by container, your cargo cannot be longer than 40ft, wider than 8ft, or higher than about 8ft. These are the dimensions of one of the largest container ships at sea.

In this case, your cargo would be classified as oversized.

The next step is to decide which shipping method you'd like to use, as your transportation options are more limited than normal-sized cargo. You can read more on how the various shipping methods make allowances for oversized goods.

Now, it's also crucial to learn about the necessary paperwork to obtain to move your cargo. Depending on your destination and your mode of transport, there may be permits, export declarations, and such.

You can consult a reliable shipping specialist in your area for more information on which documents need to be filled in. They will help you know exactly what to fill in and how.

Incorrect paperwork or a lack of permits can delay the whole shipping process and put you at risk of fines.

Different Shipping Methods

The oversized nature of your cargo limits the variety of transport options available to you. However, owing to the demand for safe and secure shipping for this type of cargo, more and more allowances are being made for oversized freight.

Let's delve deeper into the different shipping methods you can deploy for your oversized goods.

By sea

Shipping by sea was - and still is to a large extent - the firm favorite for moving goods across the ocean. Each year, billions of tons (11 billion, to be exact) of goods are transported by sea.

And it's little reason why. Sea freight is economical and efficient, and the size of the container ships is ideal for bulky and tall cargo.

By road

Depending on the distance your oversized freight needs to cover, going by road in either a flatbed trailer or a large freight truck may be a good option.

You need to move specialized equipment or a construction vehicle across state borders. You would want to ship it safely and securely.

You can do just that by using road transportation, with the added benefit of door-to-door delivery. This will save on transport costs to and from holding facilities and storage expenses.

GPS tracking systems, which allow you to see exactly where your goods are at any given time, and an increase in regulations along the road contribute to a much safer, more reliable mode of transport.


By air

If you need your oversized cargo shipped fast, air transport offers a convenient and quick alternative.

However, there is a catch. Goods transported by air must fit the legal limits and dimension requirements to be accepted.

There are also several tariffs and regulations, much more than traditional sea or road shipping. This may make shipping your overweight cargo by air more challenging.

By rail

Railway transport is one of the better choices for high and heavy cargo. The railroad infrastructure is designed to carry huge shipments, and this shipping mode is often more environmentally friendly.

Compared to other modes of transport, railroad shipping only contributed 0.5% to the total greenhouse gas emissions in the States.

Over and above these benefits, shipping by rail is also cheaper on average.

Combination shipping

Huge loads can vary in shape and size, and you will need a tailored shipping solution to ensure your goods reach their destination safely.

If you must use a mix of transportation methods, check whether each mode can accommodate your overweight cargo. For example, heavy machinery may fit easily onto a ship, but how will it reach the port?

You will also need to have a clear line of communication between everyone at the different stops along the way. A good shipping professional will be able to help you set up a smooth transport route to ensure your huge load makes it to its destination.


Challenges With Shipping High and Heavy Cargo

While there are many options to ship your overweight and oversized cargo, there are a few key considerations to remember throughout the shipping process.

  • Route restrictions and legal limits around the size of your cargo may cause holdups in your delivery schedule if you do not have the required documents.
  • Specialized equipment and shipping material is often needed to transport oversized goods.
  • A lot of paperwork is involved in securing the correct permits to ensure you are up to regulation compliance standards.
  • Due to its size, there is always a safety and security risk when shipping larger items.
  • Moving oversized cargo can be more costly than standard-sized cargo.

To overcome these issues quickly, it's recommended to consult a shipping company that is well-versed and experienced in oversized cargo regulations.

Wrapping Up

It's complicated to ship high and heavy cargo, but not impossible, especially when you understand the correct type of transport needed to move your item/s.

And it's even more of a breeze when you have a solid logistics and shipping partner to take care of everything. A1 Auto Transport can be that - and more - for you and your cargo.

Contact us today for a quote!

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Joe Webster always knew the auto transport industry would be a great career option. And with decades of experience, Joe is now an established consultant for A1 Auto Transport.

Joe was born in Santa Cruz, California. During high school, Joe worked as a mechanic; a job continued to work part-time during his bachelor's degree.

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A-1 Auto Transport is a disclosed agent for the following shipping companies:

CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus Drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
Trans Global Auto Logistics, Inc.
3401 E Randol Mill Rd,
Arlington, TX 76011
NO. 018191NF
CFR Rinkens
15501 Texaco Avenue
Paramount, CA 90723
NO. 013055NF
ABC Worldwide LLC
2840 NW 2nd Ave #105
Boca Raton, FL 33431
NO. 025472F
ShipYourCarNow LLC
1160 South Rogers Circle Suite 1
Boca Raton, FL 33487
NO. 025646
Merco Air & Ocean Cargo, Inc.
6 Fir Way
Cooper City, FL 33026
NO. 021869F
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