How to pick up and drop off at freight terminals safely

Image of trucks lined up in a parking lot

How to Use Freight Terminals Safely

As we head into the winter holidays and brace for another Covid surge, it is essential to refresh our familiarity with some of the protocols in the shipping industry that help keep us safe in these challenging times. Freight terminal safety is critical, not only to keep shippers, warehouse workers, and drivers protected but also to keep freight markets open and supply lines that drive the economy moving forward.

Freight terminals, or carrier terminals, are facilities where carriers can consolidate and organize shipments to be routed to their final destinations. Carriers have thousands of freight terminals across the country used for this purpose, and most of them can be used as places where shippers can drop off or pick up their shipments. Picking up or dropping off shipments at a freight terminal can save time and provide flexibility for shippers, and can save money on accessorial fees that may be required for a home or business delivery. Most freight terminals have remained open during the pandemic and continue to operate in order to keep the shipping industry moving. However, if you plan on utilizing a freight terminal to drop off or pick up your shipment, it is important that you are aware of protocols and strictly adhere to them to ensure everyone is safe.


Schedule Pickups and Drop-offs

If you have gotten a quote and booked a carrier for your shipment, and wish to drop off your goods at a freight terminal, it is important that you prepare your shipment properly to ship and bring all the information required. To prepare your shipment for drop-off, make sure all items are packaged, palletized, or crated securely based on the type of items being shipped. Along with their shipment, shippers must also bring a photo I.D and two copies of the BOL (Bill of Lading) with them, one copy for their carrier, and one to be affixed to the shipment itself.

When picking up a shipment, the consignee must bring a photo I.D, a copy of the BOL, and the PRO (Progressive Rotating Order) number to the terminal in order to complete the pickup. The consignee must also arrive prepared to fill out a POD (Proof of Delivery) form to account and sign off for all the items in the shipment and attest to their condition. The consignee making the pickup should also bring the appropriate vehicle and any straps, bands, or cords necessary to secure the shipment to be hauled away.


Covid Regulations

Lastly, whether you are picking up a shipment or dropping one off, it is crucial that you adhere to all Covid rules and protocols put in place at the facility to keep both the workers and the public safe. Practice social distancing (don’t stand within six feet of others unless absolutely necessary), wear a mask, wear gloves or bring your own pen to sign any paperwork, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before and after visiting the terminal, and cough or sneeze into your mask or sleeve. Following these and any other posted protocols at the freight terminal will ensure everyone’s safety and protection and allow terminals to continue serving shippers and keeping freight moving.

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