Dry, refrigerated/frozen, hazardous, tanker endorsed, high value, or specialized in any way, we have a large network of highly experienced IMC’s to service it all.
WHAT IS INTERMODAL?
Intermodal freight transport is the transport of freight in a container or vehicle without handling the freight when changing modes. Intermodal freight uses multiple modes of transportation, such as truck and rail.
INTERMODAL TRANSPORTATION’S STRATEGIC ADVANTAGE
- Cost Effective – Intermodal transportation offers lower rates, predictable pricing, and flexibility.
- Comprehensive Network – North America’s extensive rail network makes it possible to send shipments from coast to coast with ease.
- Optimizes Driver Capacity – The driver shortage has caused a crunch in capacity, specifically for long-distance road hauls. Intermodal utilizes the rail and local drayage carriers to complete long-haul moves reducing the dependence on over-the-road drivers.
- Environmentally friendly – Shippers can significantly reduce their carbon footprint by switching to intermodal shipping. Moving one ton of freight one mile via rail can reduce CO2 emissions by 83%.
- Dependability, capacity, and safety – Intermodal shipping gives you access to more equipment and standardized transit schedules.
A few things to consider when deciding whether intermodal is a good fit for your shipments.
- Intermodal transportation is best suited for intermediate and finished goods with net weight under 42,500 lbs.
- The longer the haul, the more likely you’ll be to find cost savings through intermodal. Freight moving 500+ miles, or anything longer than a day on over the road, could be a strong candidate.
- If the origin and destination cities are close to major metros, chances are that they are also close to rail ramps and/or ports. This drives intermodal costs down.
- Intermodal transportation tends to be safer and more secure for the cargo. There is no touch from the driver and container doors remain secured and out of reach during transit. Also, other than being on a fixed track, there are specific blocking and bracing requirements that ensure the product can’t shift in transit if followed correctly.
- Is your freight time sensitive? Typical intermodal transit is truckload transit, plus a day when the lane is within one railroad’s network. If the overall move requires shipment to interchange between multiple railroads, this can increase by another day or two. Longer delays due to track or ramp congestion, weather, track conditions, etc. are quite common.
- Intermodal transportation is a smart selection when cargo flow must be regular/recurring and in similar quantities. If your shipper sends out several of the same LTL shipment each month, it may be worth comparing costs and service levels to that of intermodal.