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Container Chassis in Logistics - Know the Shortage & Charges

Views: 27     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2022-11-04      Origin: Site

For container trucks transporting goods on the road, it seems a matter of course that the front of the car and the chassis carrying goods behind it are integrated and have the same license plate. However, in the United States, the front and chassis are separated by Two entities operate, have two licenses, and manage and bill separately, forming a unique American truck transportation market.


Truck transportation is a very important link in the supply chain of container intermodal transportation in the United States, connecting the port and Interior Point Intermodal, IPI. According to figures released by the American Trucking Association, trucks transported a total of 10.23 billion tons of goods in 2020, accounting for about 72.5% of the national transportation volume—that is to say, land transportation in the United States basically relies on road truck transportation


Factors affecting U.S. road trucking include the number of truck drivers employed and the utilization rate of chassis vehicles. The strikes of workers and the low turnover of chassis vehicles have weakened the capacity. In the past two years, the container has been disturbed by the epidemic and turbulent. The transportation market is particularly notable.


Here is the list of contents:

· What is a Container Chassis?

· Chassis Shortage

· Chassis Fee



U.S.-Chassis



What is a Container Chassis?

In freight and logistics terms, a container chassis refers to a trailer with tires under the frame, and a container is placed on top of the chassic, so it is sometimes called a container chassis or a skeleton trailer. In the following, we will briefly introduce the shortage of container chassis and common chassis charges in recent years. (Read more: What is a Container Chassis? )


container chassic


Chassis Shortage

"Chassis shortage" has long been a common problem during peak shipping seasons. Since 2020, as supply chains have become particularly strained, chassis shortage has become an even greater focus. The main reason for chassis shortage is the increase in shipments, but the decrease in the number of container chassis.


Container chassis is a key piece of the intermodal puzzle. The more containers pile up on a dock, the more container chassis you need to move them around. Intermodal containers are virtually impossible to move without sufficient container chassis, as the containers need to be transported by this purpose-built equipment.


In recent years, the shortage of container chassis has continued to exceed the shortage of container capacity. The reasons for the shortage are as follows:


· Old chassis in disrepair


· New chassis production can't keep up


· High tariff


· Chassis does not return to origin (displacement)


· Chassis leased for too long


· Direct delivery


Container Chassis Shortage


The U.S. imposed tariffs on chassis from China, preventing more than 40,000 new chassis from entering the North American market.


Chassis displacement is also a common problem, when the driver moves the container from position A to position B, and brings the chassis to position B, creating a short cycle, which results in less chassis left at the starting point.


Due to the increasing volume of goods, drivers are renting chassis for far longer than the usual 3 to 5 days. Even keep the leased chassis for 90 days or more in some cases. Since most chassis are in the rental pool, this means that drivers, shippers and carriers without chassis will be subject to these extended rentals.


Direct deliveries are also an ongoing problem, as recipients often ask drivers to leave containers and chassis in their parking spaces rather than unload them themselves. This can also be attributed to labor shortages, as these companies often cannot unload quickly and need the flexibility to move containers. But that means many chassis are just sitting on the ground, waiting to be unloaded, and then waiting longer to be recycled and returned to circulation.


Given the many factors behind the chassis shortage, experts expect the chassis shortage to persist through at least 2023, even if other supply chain struggles dissipate.



Chassis Fee

Although container chassis is only a small part of the entire maritime cross-border e-commerce logistics and transportation chain, the supply chain congestion caused by the shortage of container chassis in recent years should not be underestimated. Next, let us understand the chassis fee.



Chassis Usage Fee

Chassis Usage Fee

Unless a single carrier owns the haul trucks used throughout the shipment, transferring containers to chassis will incur a chassis usage fee.


For truckload shipping, the chassis usage fee is a fixed fee, which depends on the freight company; for LTL shipping, it is a variable fee, and the fee is calculated based on the quantity of goods; for overweight containers that require three-axle chassis, the chassis usage fee will be higher.


Chassis Split Fee

Chassis Split Fee

U.S. port haulage, I believe you often encounter a term called "Chassis Split". Among the terminals in the United States and West, the LBCT terminal (OOCL's own terminal) is bound to have this fee, because the configuration of this terminal does not have a chassis pool. So will other docks appear? The answer is possible. Although other ports have chassis pools, during peak congestion periods, there may still be insufficient chassis when the chassis is returned to the market very slowly, and you need to go to other chassis pools to use it.


In addition, the following cases will be charged chassis split fee.


When a chassis needs to be picked up or dropped off by a truck at a different location than the pickup/delivery location of the container. This results in the driver having to go to two different locations to retrieve the chassis and container, and incur charges.


This fee is charged when a truck driver has to pick up from a different location and bring it to the terminal due to missing chassis, or when the chassis is returned to a different location due to terminal/VOCC instructions or the location where they originally picked up the chassis.


There are two types of Chassis Split. Pickup by car means that the shipping terminal where the goods arrive does not provide chassis, and the driver must go to the chassis supplier separately before the port. In the same way, sub-container return means that the container is returned to the marine terminal, but the terminal does not accept chassis due to space or policy reasons, and must deliver the chassis in another place. A single shipment may require split pickups and split returns, resulting in two chassis split fees.


Tri-axle Chassis Fee

Tri-axle Chassis Fee

The Tri-axle chassis fee may not be familiar to everyone, but you have undoubtedly seen tri-axle vehicles. As the name suggests, a tri-axle is a trailer with three axles. For example, heavy-duty dump trucks or tractors are often equipped with a third set of wheels or driveshafts to carry heavy loads. Some chassis are also equipped with a standard tandem drive shaft and 3rd shaft to allow the chassis to carry a higher load capacity.


When equipped with a tri-axle chassis, containers using this chassis can carry heavier weights. If the shipper's cargo is heavy cargo, the shipper will generally require the use of a three-axle truck. For example, a container of granite and stone is heavy, and the shipper may specifically ask the towing company to use three-axle equipment for hauling.


A tri-axle chassis fee is assessed if the truck is transporting an overweight truckload. Typically, a tri-axle chassis is required for 20ft containers over 36,000 lbs and 40ft containers over 44,000 lbs. If a tri-axle chassis is required, truck drivers can charge a chassis fee and a tri-axle chassis fee.

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