If you work in construction or heavy industry, there may come a time when you need to ship heavy equipment to begin a new project or augment your on-site equipment. And while the process of shipping heavy equipment may seem intimidating, it’s not as complicated as it may appear – particularly if you work with an experienced transportation and logistics company.
In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know and think about when you’re transporting heavy equipment from state-to-state.
1. Come Up With A Plan Based On The Equipment You Need To Move
Depending on the equipment you need to move and its destination, there are some considerations you may need to think about before you contact a transportation company.
- Oversized load – If you’re moving a heavy piece of equipment – such as a bulldozer – it may meet oversized load criteria. You will need to work with the state Department of Transportation or the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to obtain the proper permits and licensing for an oversized load. Your transportation partner can help you with this step.
- Multiple states/territories – If your shipment will be traveling through multiple states, you may need to get special permits and ensure that state laws are followed throughout the entire journey of your shipment. Again, your transportation partner can help you with this step if you don’t have experience doing this on your own.
- Loading/unloading destinations – You’ll need to consider the accessibility of the equipment for loading and unloading. A bulldozer, for example, should be moved from a muddy or unpaved area to a paved area before it’s loaded onto a semi-truck. When it comes to unloading, you’ll also need to consider the capabilities of the truck and choose an area with the proper terrain, ground conditions and stability.
- Weather conditions – Check on the weather throughout the transport route. It may be worth waiting to avoid ice/snow storms and serious rain storms. Inclement weather can cause delays in your shipment and put it at risk.
2. Find A Qualified, Trustworthy Transportation Partner
Once you’ve thought through the basic parameters of your shipment plan and you’ve considered the above factors, you’ll need to contact a local transportation partner. Even if you have the equipment (such as heavy-duty trucks) necessary to move your own equipment, it’s usually still a good idea to leave heavy machinery transportation up to the professionals.
Try asking for recommendations for transportation companies among colleagues and others in your industry. You can also do a bit of Googling and online research to find trustworthy heavy equipment transportation services near you.
Make a list of companies that look like a good fit for your project, and make sure that they have the right equipment for the job, and that they are fully licensed, bonded and insured. Check their DOT permits with all state and federal agencies to ensure they’re operating legally.