What you can do to avoid freight damage liability
Dealing with a rejected load? Learn how you can avoid costly losses caused by freight damage liability
How much has freight damage cost you?
As you know, you can lose days, if not weeks, of your time when you’re liable for freight damage.
The rerouting and reworking process is a hassle, and can even end in you losing money on a trip.
The issues are only compounded when you know that the freight damage wasn’t your driver’s fault—but you’re being held liable regardless.
In this blog, we’ll give you the insight you need to deal with a rejected load and prove your driver’s innocence if the damage was not their fault.
Has your load been rejected?
Loads can be rejected for a variety of reasons, but they’re most commonly rejected because of damaged freight.
The damage may or may not have been caused by your driver’s actions on the road, but regardless, they’ll be the very first person to be blamed.
Your driver notices that a pallet wasn’t properly wrapped when it was loaded into their trailer by the shipper.
They think, “well if I drive safely it should be fine.”
So, they drive as safely as possible but along the way, the pallet’s wrapping tears open and damages the products.
This puts your driver and your business in a precarious situation. Your driver wasn’t driving in a manner that would damage the freight, had it been wrapped correctly–but nonetheless, the damage occurred while they were driving.
And sure enough, when your driver gets to the receiver’s location, they’re being held liable for the damage.
You don’t have any evidence to show that it wasn’t their fault–so now you have to deal with a potentially weeks-long process that’s going to set your business back financially.
Think about how much time and money you could have saved if you and your driver were properly prepared ahead of time?
The consequences of not proving your driver’s innocence can prove to be costly for your business and your profits.
How freight damage can affect your business
When you’re held liable for freight damage, you can expect to lose a lot of time and money.
There are a variety of factors that can affect your bottom line, including:
- Increased insurance premiums
- Unsatisfied customers
- Additional fuel costs
- Waiting for disposition
The combination of these factors can cost your business thousands of dollars and dramatically set you back as you look to grow your fleet.
Will my insurance premiums increase?
Preventing a claim is possible if your insurance company is able to work out a deal with the receiver–but that isn’t always a full-proof plan.
If your customer decides to file a claim, you could find yourself dealing with significantly increased premiums.
According to an American Trucking Research Institute (ATRI) report, 90% of respondents reported general insurance premium increases between 2018 and 2020.
So your insurance premiums are already expensive enough–you don’t want them to continue increasing, especially for an instance of freight damage that may not have even been your driver’s fault.
How can freight damage affect my business financially?
There are a host of financial losses associated with damaged freight.
For starters, your driver will not be able to pick up another load until they’ve completed the receiver’s disposition.
Disposition is the instructions your customers provide when products are rejected. When you’re held liable for freight damage, you must complete their instructions before you can move on to your next load.
This process can take days or even weeks, as your driver may have to wait for the receiver to determine what items can still be used, source lumpers from another location, or even find a disposal site.
Because the process can be so time-consuming–you’re basically stuck with an out-of-service truck for an extended period of time. And as you know very well, if those trucks’ wheels aren’t spinning with a load in the trailer, you’re not making money.
In fact, you may even be losing money.
Throughout this process, your driver may also need to constantly move from location to location. The receiver may require them to reroute the products to a different facility or transport them to a disposal site.
This process can force you to incur additional fuel costs. And with diesel fuel prices still well over $5 a gallon nationwide, you could be losing hundreds of dollars worth of fuel.
Will this affect my business’ reputation?
You’ve probably heard the saying: “the best advertising is done by a satisfied customer”
Well, the opposite can also be true.
An unsatisfied customer can really cause some damage to your fleet’s reputation.
Nobody wants to be known as the carrier that damages freight–designations like this can cause your business to lose customers and lose out on premium loads over time.
You’ve worked hard to maintain high safety standards and a good reputation for your fleet–that’s why it’s important to be prepared ahead of time when you’re dealing with freight damage.
How you can use a semi-truck dash camera to prove your driver’s innocence in 2022
Is your driver being blamed for freight damage that came as a result of a shipper’s negligence?
It’s not uncommon for shippers to load a trailer with poorly wrapped pallets that’ll surely come apart as soon as the truck starts to move.
And if your fleet isn’t prepared–your business could possibly be held liable for the shipper and receivers’ losses.
As we previously highlighted, this could lead to a variety of costly revenue, fuel, and time losses for your business, in addition to increased insurance premiums.
So what can you do to protect your fleet from false accusations?
You can equip your fleet with the best dash cameras for semi-trucks, GPSTab Dash Cameras.
As you know, there are a few exceptions to carrier liability. According to Freight Quote, this includes “shipment losses, damages, and delays that may have been a result of an act of the shipper…”
Our smart dash cameras provide you with the evidence you need to avoid liability and prove your driver’s innocence.
Unlike an off-the-shelf dash camera, our trucker dash cams record unsafe road events such as harsh braking, turning, and accelerating.
You can then easily view these road events in a downloadable report.
How does this benefit you?
You can prove that your driver didn’t record any unsafe events on the road that could have damaged the freight they were hauling.
Then, present this information to the receiver, shipper, broker, and insurance company to avoid blame and save thousands of dollars in the process.
Click here to learn more about how GPSTab Dash Cameras can benefit your fleet.
Are you ready to equip your fleet today?
Secure your fleet with GPSTab Dash Cameras by clicking here or request a demo by filling out the form below.