The freight world is flooded with inside baseball terminology and abbreviations, and one might even sound a bit scary as a word starter - OOG (see Oogie Boogie for Disney fans out there). In shipping parlance, OOG cargo is big - and in some cases it can seem scary - but it doesn't have to send chills down a shipper's spine if the right measures are in place. OOG or out of gauge cargo refers to freight that's too large for a traditional shipping container. That means the load is either flat out big, or may just have an appendage that makes it unable to fit in standard 20 foot, 40 foot or 53 foot containers. Read on for some examples of this oversized freight and tips for the best ways to ship it.
OOG Cargo Examples
To find examples of OOG cargo, one just needs to think about awkwardly sized or especially large items. Out of gauge cargo examples include:
Large passenger cars, trucks and buses
Machine parts for manufacturing, construction or other large-scale equipment
The machinery itself, like cranes, bulldozers, forklifts, HVAC, etc.
Wind turbine blades/poles
Manufactured or tiny homes
Tires for heavy duty equipment
Again, anything big or with dimensions that don't fit into a traditional six-sided cuboid (or rectangular prism depending on who you talk to) fits the out of gauge - also known as abnormally shaped indivisible loads or AILs - categorization.
How to Ship Out of Gauge Cargo
Shipping out of gauge cargo necessitates a bit more planning and typically cost as well compared to freight that fits neatly into a container. It's imperative to have exact dimensions to pass along to the logistics provider and/or carrier and work with them on the right solution for each oversized load. That's because the cargo requires alternate arrangements be made. Some of those alternate arrangements can include:
Open top containers (some have removable roofs or some have no roofs at all)
Flat rack containers (containers with no sides, and often collapsible ends - barely "containers" at all)
Modified traditional containers (in some cases an agreed upon strategy may be to create an opening or hole in a traditional container to accommodate the oddly sized freight)
OOG transport internationally brings in chartered air or vessels, or RORO (roll on, roll off) ships in some cases. Keep in mind, the right equipment is needed at origin and destination to load and unload, whether it's a crane, heavy duty forklift, ramp or something else. Solutions for your specific project cargo may fit one or more of the above options or require even more creativity - but rest assured, the right freight provider will help you find a way.
Who is the right freight provider? One with experience moving out of gauge cargo and connections with carriers across freight modes to make it happen. A 3PL like InTek for instance. Just let us know what you need to move, and we'll get back to you to discuss the right solutions. For more information about InTek, or logistics and supply chain issues in general, check out our Freight Guides.