How to Be First in Line for Available Space
Are intermodal capacity constraints coming around the bend, like the train in the traditional Johnny Cash song, “Folsom Prison Blues?” No, it is already at the station, according to industry analysts. With trucking capacity continuing to be tight, more shippers are turning to intermodal rail as an option for volume or long-haul freight — worsening an existing capacity shortage for rail providers.
As we move into the traditional peak season for intermodal rail, shippers are looking for ways to be first in line for any available space.
In this blog, Shelli Austin, President of InTek, an intermodal transportation management provider, shares her perspective about the current intermodal capacity constraints and how to operate effectively in this environment.
Q. Is intermodal capacity constrained?
Q. If so, Are Capacity Constraints more pronounced than a year ago?
Q. How can shippers and 3PLs who are users of Intermodal make sure they are first in line for the capacity that is available?
See if you can find a provider that has trailer capacity that can move on the rail. How about small boxes? Can we use 40’s or 45’s to move our freight versus the traditional 53’s? Not to give a statement to the transportation management system (TMS) on this, but it is a true statement that having a robust TMS during this market is what helps a 3PL or shipper get to the best capacity solution in the quickest way possible because you do have to search outside the norm to provide consistent coverage.