Archive for May, 2010

Railroad Insurance – Cargo Insurance for Rail Shipments

Monday, May 24th, 2010

When you need to send your merchandise quickly and safely and in large quantities, nothing beats shipping by rail. Railroad shipping is very popular for small and large shipments, both transcontinental and over long distances. Shipping by rail is not only cost effective but also environmentally sound, and is growing in popularity. However, shipping by rail can be tricky when it comes to getting insurance. This is because railroad insurance for rail shipments is different from other cargo insurance policies.

While shipping by rail often makes sense, it does not always get your goods to the customer or the retail location where it will be sold. So how do you make sure that your products are being protected on every leg of their trip, regardless of the method of transport?

First, do not assume that the railroad companies are offering the same coverage that a ship or trucking company would. The liability most railroads carry is limited to $25,000 for any damage to the goods of a single rail car. This will not be acceptable if your products are valued at a much higher rate. Do not make the mistake of thinking that your umbrella policy will extend to fully cover your belongings being shipped by rail.

When you are seeking insurance coverage for your rail shipments, carefully check over any insurance quote you receive. You may want to consider an Excess Coverage policy that can decrease your deductible while increasing your coverage. Obviously, this will be at an additional cost, but the cost for an Excess Coverage policy is far less than the cost of the cargo and the deductible of your umbrella coverage.

It is important to note that railroads are not legally required to carry insurance on their cargo at all in the United States. In addition, insurance laws vary state by state and railroad shipments typically cross state lines. It is a good idea to be well informed of the laws that govern each state your cargo will travel through.

When you are seeking insurance quotes, you need to know that the company providing the quotes is trustworthy. Start from there, and you are sure to get the best coverage! Use and make a wise insurance decision.

Keep on Trucking: Cargo Insurance for Truck Freight Shipping

Monday, May 24th, 2010

Whether your cargo is being delivered to a port of export or being shipped to customers on this continent, you are using inland freight to get your products where they need to go. Whether you ship small or large amounts of cargo, more than half of all cargo in the United States is sent by road freight. It is important to protect your cargo when shipping by road freight, and cargo insurance is the best way to provide that coverage.

Unlike shipping by rail or ocean, road freight cargo insurance is generally designed to protect the shipping company and the truck driver, rather than the owner of the cargo. Because most shipping companies and drivers carry substantial coverage, cargo owners can easily shortchange themselves by not including additional cargo insurance to protect their investment. Your cargo is best protected when everyone involved in the shipment – customer and cargo owner, trucker, and trucking company – all have adequate coverage. If you are someone who is involved in road freight, what should you consider when evaluating your insurance quotes?

Here are critical components to keep in mind:

  • Total Loss Coverage- This is defined as no matter what happens to the cargo – collision, fire, acts of God– your goods are covered. However, it only covers your cargo if the entire shipment is destroyed.
  • Basic Risk Coverage- this is similar to the Total Loss Coverage, but also includes theft or non-delivery.
  • All Risk Coverage- this is the most comprehensive cargo insurance coverage available for road freight, and covers both full cargo loss and partial. It also includes additional coverage for things such as employee strikes, war, civil disruptions, duty, and adds in “door to door” coverage for your cargo.
  • Door to Door coverage – your cargo is covered while it is in the possession of the shipping company. However, once it is delivered by that shipping company, it might need additional coverage. Examples of this would be if your goods were at a dock or in a warehouse.

Are you the owner of a shipping company, a long distance trucker, or the customer needing to ship your cargo across the country using road freight? If so, cargo insurance is a critical element to protecting you and your cargo. Shopping online for road freight cargo insurance is the best way to find the best policy for your needs. Be sure to use to receive quotes from multiple companies.

Interstate versus Intrastate Cargo Shipping – The Differences and Requirements

Monday, May 24th, 2010

When you are shipping cargo for your business, some of it is likely being shipped to customers and locations within your state. Other cargo is shipped outside of your state to reach customers or even ports for international shipping. You need to protect your goods while they are traveling regardless of the route they are taking. How do you make sure to meet the regulations that arise in the interstate verses intrastate shipment of cargo?

First, we need to define and detail the differences between interstate and intrastate cargo. Interstate is defined as any cargo that is transported across state lines. Intrastate is cargo that stays within a state’s border. So, for instance, if you transport from Pittsburgh to Philadelphia, that is intrastate, but Pittsburgh to Cleveland is interstate.

As a shipping company you must meet certain requirements in order to transport goods across state lines. You need to adhere to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR, a regulatory body within the Department of Transportation) and the federal Hazardous Material regulations. In addition, you must be sure to meet the safety and insurance requirements of any state you travel through, particularly cargo insurance requirements.

Keep in mind that intrastate deliveries of cargo are only required to meet the standards of the state in which the cargo is delivered to. Motor freight cargo requirements vary a bit from state to state, but are generally very similar to the FMCSR requirements. Intrastate cargo insurance requirements are a bit easier to meet, particularly if there are no port deliveries. You need to follow the cargo insurance regulations of your state if you intend to deliver or send intrastate cargo.

One important thing to remember is that when you transport goods across state lines, you are going to need a more inclusive and likely more expensive cargo insurance policy. Two factors go into this. First, you will need to meet federal regulations for cargo insurance. Secondly you will also need to consider the greater risk involved in transporting cargo across state lines. When you investigate your cargo insurance quotes, it is important to keep these factors in mind.

Shipping cargo is a tricky business regardless of where it is going. Whether you are shipping your cargo and products across town or across the nation, it is critical that you have enough cargo insurance coverage to protect your investment. Rather than trying to consider all these factors yourself when purchasing cargo insurance, using a trusted and website like is a wise decision. Good luck and good shipping!