Time is Money in Intermodal Transportation

Anyone that ships or receives international steamship line containers is aware that extra time at the rail or port can cost a fortune in demurrage fees.  The going rate is roughly Container Ship Photo$100.00 per container per day.  If the container is not turned in within the specified time of the interchange, detention charges will apply as well.  And now, most steamship lines are charging for chassis on a daily basis.  These fees can add up to enormous amounts of money if not properly managed.

This article focuses on how we are utilizing free time that is provided by the Port/Rail to eliminate unnecessary demurrage charges.  In February 2013, we implemented a state of the art dispatch system.  The software has many features that assist us in providing our customers with best of class service.  One of the features that really sold us on this system is automated notification when import containers are released at the rail/port.

Timely Information

Our dispatch system starts working before the containers ever arrive at the port or rail.  The system is always tracing containers giving us an ETA for all containers arriving at a rail facility.  Upon release of the container, the dispatch system displays the Last Free Day to our dispatchers.  This integration is valuable tool that helps us prioritize our daily workload.

Timely Communication

Timely information allows our customer service representatives the opportunity to start the scheduling process before the containers are released.  Once the containers have arrived and are fully released, the containers are automatically made available for dispatch in our system.  In the event that release numbers are needed, we can set the system to notify our customers by email that the containers are released.  The customer can then send the emailed notification back to us with the release information.

Efficient Dispatch

Having the ability to effectively utilize free time at the rail or port allows us much more flexibility when it comes to scheduling appointments.  Instances of demurrage have dropped dramatically since the implementation of this system.

It was our expectation that when we invested in new technology and adopted best of class procedures that our customer service performance would take us to new levels.  Our expectations have been exceeded.

For more information about our company, please contact either one of our terminals.

Dallas Fort/Worth



Houston/La Porte


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