Is it Safe to Ship Commercial Vehicles?

Shipping a commercial truck or van, or any oversized vehicle, may seem like a big risk, especially if you’re not familiar with the process. Fortunately, shipping commercial vehicles is safe. In fact, oversized vehicles such as trucks, busses, RVs, and limos are shipped all over the country on a regular basis. However, there are a few things to know first before you consider shipping a commercial vehicle: 

Differences between regular car and oversized vehicle shipping

Shipping a regular passenger car and shipping a commercial truck are considerably different processes. When you ship a normal sized vehicle, your car will end up being shipped with several other cars on the same car carrier, whether you select open-air shipping or enclosed shipping. When you ship an oversized vehicle, such as a commercial truck, it will be moved on a flatbed carrier by itself. 

This means three things: 

  • First, shipping an oversized vehicle will be more expensive because the carrier can only carry one vehicle at a time.
  • Second, the availability of these types of carriers will be more limited, which means you should book your shipment even further in advance. It is normally recommended to book a car shipment about a month in advance, so for commercial vehicle shipping you should consider booking at least six weeks in advance. 
  • Third, commercial vehicle shipments may take longer than a typical car shipment, as oversized vehicle carriers will travel at lower overall speeds and will have even more restrictions on which roads they can use to travel. So, be prepared for your commercial truck shipment to take at least three weeks to arrive at its destination from the time that the truck is picked up.

Securing the vehicle

One of the biggest fears people have when shipping an oversized truck or van is that it will not be properly secured and might incur some damage as a result. However, you can rest assured that your commercial vehicle will be secured to the carrier correctly and safely. 

When you ship a vehicle on a flatbed carrier, as you would with a commercial truck, it is secured to the carrier by a series of chain and/or straps. They also apply the parking brake. In fact, the Federal Motor Safety Carrier Administration has recently required even more tie downs for commercial shipping by which all car carriers must abide.

Preventing theft

Though it’s exceptionally rare, theft is an unfortunate possibility when it comes to shipping a vehicle, whether it is big or small. Fortunately, car carriers go to great lengths to combat this. As a result of those efforts, theft of any kind occurs less than one percent of the time when shipping a car. When you are shipping an oversized vehicle, it is even more uncommon.

Any reputable flatbed car carrier will have a tracking device in or attached to the cargo it is shipping. They will also employ wheel locks on the vehicles they are shipping, including commercial vehicles. Finally, all reputable car shipping companies will offer insurance for your truck. So, if something does happen while the commercial vehicle is in transit, you will be fully covered for any expenses.

Conclusion

Shipping an oversized vehicle, specifically a commercial truck or van, might seem like a risky venture, yet it is actually quite safe. Auto transport companies go to great lengths to secure your vehicle and make sure that it stays safe from any damage or theft during its trip. Even if the worst does somehow occur, car shipping insurance can prevent you from having to pay for any of it. Just remember, when you are shipping any type of oversized commercial vehicle, you should book even further in advance than normal and you should also be prepared for the shipment to take several weeks time.

Matt Osborn is the lead writer for RoadRunner Auto Transport.


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