Believe it or not, most people outside of the shipping industry measure things differently than people inside the industry. Therefore, it's easy to make a mistake when you're measuring your freight. Here are some things you should keep in mind when you're measuring your cargo before sending it out.
The first thing you want to do when measuring your specialty freight is to measure it in three dimensions. That means you need to find the height, length, and width. You should do this for every item that you are shipping. After you have those dimensions, multiply the three together to get the cubic inches of the shipment. If you have more than one item, add all of the cubic dimensions together after you measure them separately. Then, divide the total number by 1,728 to get the cubic feet of your freight. Finally, you will need to weigh your shipment, then divide the weight by cubic feet to get the density ratio of the freight.
When you're measuring your shipment, you always want to take the measurements from the tallest, longest, or widest part of the item. Even if this part of your item seems too small to need measuring, measure it. This may seem obvious, but not everyone does it. If the measurement of your freight is not accurate, then it might not fit on the truck or your estimated truckload shipping rates or LTL freight rates will be wrong.
When your shipment is larger than certain dimensions, it becomes oversize freight. What exactly are the dimension cutoffs? Well, when it comes to height, you generally need to be under 13 feet six inches, or 162 inches, to be average sized freight. For the width, the cutoff is typically eight feet six inches, or 102 inches in total. Finally, the length can vary by state, but the average length is 53 feet or 636 inches. If your freight exceeds these dimensions, then it will be classified as oversize freight.
There are roughly 12 million trucks, locomotives, rail cars, and vessels on the transportation network that moves goods across the country and even across the world. If you plan to use these vessels to ship freight, make sure you are accurately measuring your items. Inaccurate measurements can lead to delayed shipments, lost money, and other problematic complications.
Whether you're a company looking to improve one facet of your supply chain, your entire supply chain, or simply looking for a transportation and logistics consultation, we can help.