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Intermodal Drop Container Pool Programs

January 14, 2014 Rick LaGore

Intermodal Drop Container Program

Today's same day shipping challenges and promotional surges compound the daily challlenges of shippers.  The result can be late or missed appointments, crowded docks, long waits for drivers, detention fees and upset customers. 

A solution many shippers have become more aggressive implementing is drop trailer program with their carriers. To the surprise of many, domestic intermodal IMCs can also implement a drop 53' container pool program. The drops can be either for a single shipment or container pools can be assembled for higher volume facilities. A three shipment minimum weekly volume per origin location is needed to implement a container pool program. 

Single shipment drops have an additional charge added to account for the bobtail in and out of the shipper's location. However, with a drop container pool, the shipper is not charged for the assembly of the pool. The only cost a shipper is responsible for is the teardown of the pool at the conclusion of the program. 

Intermodal container pool programs streamline the entire intermodal shipping process, which benefits the shipper, the customer and the intermodal IMC. 

The program delivers higher on-time pick-up and delivery KPIs, without unnecessary accessorial charges. Drop containers also eliminate problems caused by late or no-shows, which can clog dock space and eat up valuable real estate.

Drop container pool programs can be as simple as having the dray carrier spot or drop off a container at the origin location for pre-loading and/or unloading of freight. A drop and hook program, under a container pool strategy, has the dray driver dropping an empty container each time they pick up a loaded container, creating a container pool at the shipper's location.

Don't forget a pool container program can be set up at destination for the shipper to better manage the flow of its deliveries into their customer, thus improving SLAs (service levels) and late or early charge-backs big box retail customers impose on their suppliers.  

If you have additional questions about intermodal, please don't hesitate to reach out to us either via InTek Freight & Logistics website and subscribe to our blogs. We'd love to be a part of any conversation your team may be having when it comes to looking at intermodal transportation as an option for your 53' capacity requirements.

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