Do you ever get the sinking feeling when a shipment of goods doesn’t arrive as expected? All that time, energy and money invested only to find out it’s gone astray, potentially lost in transit. Anxiety levels can rapidly soar as your expectations have not been met while valuable resources remain unaccounted for. Well fear not! In this blog post, we are going to share with you some steps on how to track down lost freight and bring them back into safe transit paths. So buckle up and let’s jump right in!
How does freight get lost?
The most common reasons for freight getting lost include: incorrect paperwork, unclear shipping instructions/specifications, shipment misplacement and more. It is important to have a thorough understanding of the regulations and procedures in place when it comes to logistics management.
When paperwork or instructions are incomplete or incorrect, goods can be sent to completely wrong destinations or held up at the wrong locations, resulting in costly delays or even permanently lost freight.
Incorrect routing can also lead to goods being sent down a long route and held up in several transit stations, decreasing their chances of arriving on time. Any misplaced shipment must be handled with care as it could put pressure on other shipments along the chain if not rectified. Finally, freight can be lost due to natural disasters or criminal activities that disrupt the supply chain.
In any case, it is essential to track the freight and find out where it has gone astray. By doing so, you can locate the goods and get them back on track with as little disruption to your supply chain as possible.
What can you do if you end up with a lost freight?
Natural disasters like fire, flood, storms, or earthquakes are mainly the causes of lost freight. Another culprit is human error, such as mishandling or mislabeling cargo. So, what can you do to ensure you won’t lose your shipment? Find out below:
Keep a record of shipment
Keep a record of each item you are shipping or receiving in a shipment. Furthermore, track whenever each of your shipments leaves and when you receive them. The records will help you identify any issues early on. So you can quickly make a claim.
Contact your logistics service provider
If some items from your entire shipment are missing, contact your shipping company. It’s possible that your delivery of these items is late rather than lost. You must know that shipment delays can sometimes happen for various reasons.
If you are working with a third-party shipping company, it’s their job to reach out to the carrier and handle all shipping-related problems.
Bundle your items
If you are shipping smaller or fragile items or perishable goods, they are more prone to loss during transit. Therefore, use unique packaging designed specifically for all items. Bundle smaller gadgets or items into one package rather than shipping them individually. It’s common for small items or goods with loose packaging to go missing.
Track shipping status regularly
Once you book your freight, you’ll receive a tracking number that you can use to check its shipping status. You can check the status online by entering the tracking number into your shipping company’s website.
It’s advisable to track the status of your cargo regularly from the time it starts its journey till it reaches its final destination. You can also create a spreadsheet to include details like the tracking number, the time and date of delivery, and the drop-off location. If you don’t receive your cargo, these details will help identify where it went missing.
Utilize GPS tracking
It’s recommended to use GPS devices to track your shipments. These devices can continuously monitor the cargo’s location at any given time. Some devices also allow you to send messages to the receiver of the shipment.
If there is a delay in receiving freight, and you suspect it is missing, a GPS tracking device will be helpful in making a claim.
File a missing cargo report
If you lost cargo or some items in your shipment while shipping to another country, you could file a missing cargo report to the customs of that country. In some cases, the customs officials of a particular country will hold the shipment until the rightful owner comes forward.
If the same thing happens to you, file a claim immediately. But make sure to include proof of missing or lost cargo in your claim. Filing a claim will help you recover the money owed to you by your carrier.
Hire a detective
Another reason behind freight loss is if someone steals it. But theft is very rare. However, if you suspect someone stole your cargo, hire a detective. They will have experience in dealing with such cases and can determine how much monetary compensation you can receive in lieu of freight loss.
Contact legal authorities
In some scenarios, police can help recover your goods if you suspect someone stole your shipment. But that may not always be the case. However, contacting the local authorities will do you good as they may be able to arrest the culprit responsible for the theft.
Take legal steps
Taking legal steps to claim recovery of your lost freight is the last resort if nothing works out in your favor. Many countries have laws that allow consumers to file a lawsuit against a shipping company if they fail to deliver their shipment.
Therefore, you can file a claim to obtain financial compensation if you are missing items or entire cargo. But remember suing the company will come with legal costs. So you should have complete evidence of your lost freight. In the end, if you win the lawsuit, you may get the entire cost of your shipment.
Get protection against lost freight with insurance
Whether you are looking for international car shipping or sending heavy equipment overseas, protecting your cargo is a must. There is nothing like zero risk in moving cargo. However, you can take some necessary steps, such as buying freight insurance to avoid monetary loss.
Many third-party logistics companies offer this coverage as optional. We recommend buying it for peace of mind and protecting your shipment against transit risks. If you end up with lost freight, you’ll at least be able to recover its value.
There are several types of cargo coverage that shipping companies offer. So, make sure to get one that best covers your freight against significant risks.
Lost Freight: The Bottom Line
While shipping cargo domestically or internationally, taking preventative measures against freight loss should be your primary concern. The most important step you can take is to purchase freight insurance, which will safeguard you against financial loss.
Besides, partnering with an international car shipping company like AFL can have a major advantage for your cargo. We ensure the delivery of goods safely and on time, eliminating the hassle of missing items.
Working with us means more protection for your cargo, as we only offer professional drivers, vehicles, and carriers to handle your load. Additionally, we can provide the appropriate level of insurance that covers all aspects of incidents for your shipment.
Our company also handles documentation and customs clearance and can help you file claims against lost freight. We provide shipping to West Africa, Latin America, and Europe, covering all popular and remote locations. You name the place, and we’ll deliver. Contact us for any queries regarding freight insurance!