Route planning is a critical aspect of heavy haul trucking. Unlike standard cargo, oversized and overweight loads require careful consideration of road conditions, regulations, loading/securing of cargo, and most importantly- safety.
At Bill Signs Trucking, we take every precaution with our loads and choose routes with the utmost care! How do we do it? Here are some of our tips for smart route planning with oversized cargo.
Time is never wasted on inspections- this is so crucial to ensure safety and reduce the risk of damages.
Start by thoroughly inspecting your equipment, including the truck, trailer, and any specialized transporters. Ensure everything is in top condition to minimize the risk of breakdowns during the journey.
Understanding the dimensions and weight of your cargo is crucial. Measure the load precisely, including any overhang. Check the dimensions to make sure there are no inaccuracies. This information will be used to determine the best route and required permits.
Remember, each state or region has its own set of regulations concerning heavy haul transport. Ensure you are well-versed in these laws and obtain the necessary permits. This includes oversize, overweight, and load-specific permits.
Make sure that your permits remain valid throughout the journey. Monitor permit expiration dates and renew them as necessary.
Technology can be huge when it comes to optimizing the supply chain, saving time and money for heavy haulers. Route planning software specifically designed for heavy haul is awesome, because it provides many functions, such as calculating load dimensions and weight, detecting road restrictions, and assessing available detours to pinpoint the most optimal route.
Weather, traffic, and construction are all factors that can bring a trip to a standstill. Plan your route with road conditions in mind. Avoid narrow roads, low bridges, and areas with low clearance. Consider weather conditions and potential road closures due to construction or maintenance.
Plan your travel to minimize congestion and heavy traffic. Early mornings, late evenings, and weekends can be less crowded, making it easier to navigate your heavy load.
Reach out to local authorities and law enforcement to inform them of your route and schedule. They can provide guidance and support when necessary.
Utilize real-time traffic and weather apps and software to have real-time facts in front of you at all times. That way, you can adapt your route as needed. Unexpected road closures or severe weather conditions may require immediate adjustments.
Develop contingency plans in case of emergencies, breakdowns, or accidents. Having a plan in place can minimize downtime and ensure the safety of your cargo.