How to Handle Damaged Freight

Damaged freight is one of the harsh realities that lies within the shipping industry. No matter what you do to avoid damaged freight, at some point you are bound to experience it. So let’s talk about how you can handle damaged freight.

1. Inspect the freight – When you receive an LTL shipment it’s imperative that you inspect the freight for damage before signing the Delivery Receipt/ Proof of Delivery. Notate any damage to the product on the POD. If you don’t, you won’t be able to file a claim. Inspecting your freight before you sign off is the most important part!

2. To accept or refuse the freight – Depends. If the freight is damaged enough that you’ll want to file a claim, do not accept the freight. Refuse the freight. The carrier will take it back to the terminal, and then you’ll need to contact your broker to ship it back free astray. If the damage is minor and you won’t need to file a claim, go ahead and accept the freight, but NOTE THE DAMAGE ON THE POD.

3. Get freight insurance – Freight insurance is very important and it’s probably the best way to handle damaged freight. It helps the claims process immensely, giving you a better chance at getting paid out for any damaged freight. If your freight’s value is over the average deductible ($500), get insurance!!!

4. Concealed damage – Sometimes LTL damage is concealed inside the packaging of a shipment. If you think that your freight might be damaged, but there’s no physical signs of damage to the exterior of the shipment, notate that there may be concealed damage on the POD when you accept the freight. It’s not a full-proof system, but it helps in case a claim needs to be filed later.