Things to know about project cargo

In the recent decade, as globalization is starting to play a bigger role, many projects are beginning to lean on an international network of suppliers. Alongside, project cargo is beginning to play a big role in the international shipping industry as well. Wind farms, power plants, refineries, various mining operations are usually projects that require oversized parts and equipment.  If you are involved in a big international project, and you have to ship an oversized cargo overseas, planning and preparation will be the most important part. Luckily, many overseas moving companies are specialized in transporting objects that can’t fit on conventional means of transportation. Nevertheless, there are things to know about project cargo even if you are working with the most experienced shippers.

What is project cargo

First, you need to know what will be considered as project cargo. And the answer to this question is simple. If your cargo cannot fit in any of the available 20’, 40’, 40HC, 45HC, flat rack or open-top containers, your shipment will be counted as project cargo. That means that your cargo will have to be transported using specially designed, unconventional modes of transportation. This can consist of single or multiple shipments. And it can cover a wide array of freight sizes, weight, and values that you are transporting to one or many destinations over a particular period of time.

heavy truck as one of the things to know about project cargo
If your object can’t fit into any of the available container sizes it counts as a project cargo

Things to know about project cargo and the means of transportation

Of course, things to know about project cargo involve the type of transportation and equipment that will be used for moving, lifting and transporting your cargo.  You can transport it by land, rail, sea or air. And the whole operation could involve trucks, special trailers, different cranes, lifters, barges, trains, ships, and planes.

You will need an experienced shipping company

That is why, one of the most important parts of the whole operation will be to hire an experienced shipping company that will know how to handle your oversized, overweight, and probably oddly shaped shipment. If you are just one of many suppliers, talk to your partners and see how they have handled this problem. Maybe they will have an experienced shipping company to recommend.

How to find a shipper that can handle project cargo

Choosing the right carrier is one of the most important parts of project cargo. If you have no prior experience with these types of shipments, a qualified shipping company will be of much help. But, it sometimes it can be difficult to identify experienced and reliable shipper, especially the one that can handle heavy lift cargo and oversized shipments.

truck hauling a large object
You need to find reliable shipper, the one that has knowledge and equipment for moving heavy objects.

If you are involved in a government project, maybe they already have an assigned shipper. And you do not have to think about this. On the other hand, if finding a shipper is in your scope, talk to your partners, and other companies that have done it in the past. Maybe they can recommend a reliable and skilled shipping company. If not, you will need to find one on your own.

What to look for in a shipping company when dealing with project cargo

Of course, your best source for this will be the internet. Look for a shipping company that has a clean and proven record of successful project cargo transportation and handling. Here is what to look for in a shipping company when you are dealing with project cargo:

  • One of the things to know about project cargo is that you will need to find a shipper with a proven record of accomplishment and on-hand experience.
  • Your shipper should also have knowledge about the countries that are involved in your operation.
  • Find a shipper with an experienced and quality engineering team.
  • The shipping company should also have knowledge about different equipment, local haulers, manufacturers of materials and equipment.
  • Your shipper will need to have the financial strength to cover the possible risks.
  • They should be proactive in communication with prompt responses to possible changes and problems during the process.
  • Make sure that they have a good CFS bonded warehouse that they can use.
  • Also, they should have an accurate pricing without any hidden expenses.

Pre-planning is the most important part of project cargo

One of the most important things to know about project cargo is the importance of pre-planning. Project cargo involves moving oversized, heavy and very valuable objects. And the object that you are planning to ship will probably be unique in shape and size. Therefore, there is no written script on how it should be handled.

That is why you should provide your shipper with dimensional, weight and shape details in advance. That way you can reduce yours and your shipper’s costs, ensure certainty and avoid unexpected difficulties that could occur if you do not plan properly.

Things to know about project cargo – Prepare contingency plans

When it comes to unexpected occurrences, some can cause the initial transportation plan to fail. Therefore, one of the things to know about project cargo is that you will need a good contingency plan. Go through all possible scenarios, analyze them, and think of a way out. That can involve, changing the shipper, changing the transportation mode, different routes and so on.

two men analyzing data
One of the things to know about project cargo is that you will need good contingency plans

Analyze to improve

If you just started working on large international projects that involve project cargo, use this experience to improve for upcoming operations. Here are the things that you should analyze and pay attention to:

  • Weight and size of objects that you are moving and perplexity of the specific cargo.
  • Customer distribution responsibilities.
  • Consolidation points like a CFS bonded warehouse, for example.
  • The import and export protocols and regulations.
  • Onsite carriage and fitting requirements.

Play smart. Track and analyze the results of this current project to improve and ease your future projects.

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