Weathering the storm! The Logistics Industry

Gabriella Vianello, March 20, 2018

With regular storms sweeping the USA, logistics companies across the states will need to consider contingency plans and take precautions to ensure that their operations do not come to a standstill. Although bad weather will always create difficulties, by taking certain measures, it is possible to minimise the level of disruption to logistics processes and ensure that shipments are received as quickly as possible despite the unforgiving conditions.

Consider other intermodal options…

Heavy snow, rain and winds can mean that the usual form of transport used in the logistics process is no longer feasible. As a result, it may be necessary to consider alternative methods to ensure that clients receive their shipments with as little delay as possible. For example, a delivery that would usually be transferred by rail freight, could be expedited by utilising road options which are more likely to have been cleared of snow and ice.

Consider Forward Logistics options…

Preparation is the best form of defence when it comes to severe weather warnings. In some instances, logistics companies would be wise to pre-order goods, stocking up well in advance of incoming storms. By ordering above the expected quantities, logistics companies ensure clients are not left without supplies. However, logistics firms must check that transport providers are able to cope with these increased load volumes and can accommodate last-minute changes to plans.

Consider alternative route options…

During a storm, if possible, it is worth rerouting your logistics operations to avoid the affected areas. Although this may result in greater distances travelled overall between provider and client, this will ultimately reduce delays in the long run. It is also vital to ensure that shipments are sent out early wherever possible and to check that the destination facilities will be open and accessible; if not a journey will have been wasted, incurring further costs.

If all else fails…

In some instances, no matter how much preparation you put in, mother nature ultimately prevails, and the weather just cannot be beaten. In these circumstances, it is important to be vigilant and check the weather reports regularly to keep up-to-date with any developments. Logistics organisations should make sure that everyone involved is well-informed and should keep the lines of communication open throughout the storm period. By taking these precautions and planning ahead, organised logistics companies can aim to weather the storm with minimal disruption.

Written by Gabriella Vianello - Executive Assistant at Alchemy Recruitment Ltd

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