An intimate relationship exists between truckload providers and ocean import market data. Poor planning effectively results in increased detention and demurrage risk. And according to Rafael Granato of Supply Chain 24/7, “97% of carriers in the U.S. operate 20 or fewer trucks (while 90% of those operate with six or fewer trucks).

The national economy depends on trucks to deliver nearly 70% of all freight transported in the U.S. annually, according to, accounting for $671 billion worth of manufactured and retail goods transported in the country by truck alone.” Fortunately, it’s easier than ever for truckload providers to lower detention and demurrage risk with these uses of ocean import data. View the full infographic below the text body of this blog.

Improve replenishment planning with access to ocean import data. Monitoring ocean import data informs truckload providers when ocean freight volumes are surging, allowing the provider to consider all possible outcomes or any risks for ocean freight. As an example, rolled cargo could result in additional delays that add to a higher detention and demurrage risk for freight brokers and truckload providers. Access to ocean import data helps enterprises consider the total transit time and avoid unnecessary detention charges.

The causes of detention and demurrage tend to place blame on truckload providers. However, there are numerous incidents where detention and demurrage risks are absolute. The best thing for truckload providers is to learn how to recognize when these charges are inevitable and take them into account for total freight spend.

Although detention and demurrage can be inevitable, such as delays caused by weather, recognizing the changes in volume by port goes a long way to reduce the risk of demurrage charges as well. As activity declines among some ports, it is easier to reduce risk, optimize truckload carrier use and vice versa.

More insight into overall trends in volume and rates lowers risk overall. That one is the simplest of all.

As import activity increases, revealed within Ocean Shipments Report data, truckload providers should also look to expand the driver network with supply chain intelligence. Using supply chain intelligence 

  • powers an intimate understanding of current and future freight rates
  • informs and guides any new RFP processes and 
  • allows for booking shipments accordingly.

For many years the best logistics and freight professionals have thrived as they optimize managing by exception. But effective exception management relies on the ability to intervene when things go wrong. That’s why it’s important for truckload providers and ocean carriers to share communications in real-time. Of course, a limited number of ocean servicers compared to truckload providers can make this challenging at best. Therefore, the best step is to share communications throughout the truckload network and ports as close to real-time as possible, using transportation analytics along the way.

Truckload providers perform a vital function in ocean imports, providing drayage moves from the port to nearby distribution centers or break-down facilities. The only way to effectively allocate assets for drayage is to capture near-real-time data on port activity and costs. That information provides insight into whether drayage requirements will increase or decrease.

Another excellent way for truckload providers to apply ocean import data is to look at what the market experts say and do. At FreightWaves, that amounts to following the Daily Watch, sent to all SONAR customers each day, and using Passport to understand overall market trends and their causal relationships to ocean imports. That helps companies improve on-time shipping performance, lowering detention and demurrage risk. 

For advanced shippers and brokers, it’s also possible to apply ocean transport data through API-powered systems. APIs connect the supply chain much easier than integrating legacy ERP or other technologies and give rise to autonomous logistics. 

Lastly, truckload providers need a way to prioritize lanes with rank-based scoring. After choosing to use an API, data-driven decisions morph from information that can help you make better decisions, to prescriptive actions. For example, customers using SONAR Signals Open API, fed into a pre-formatted template to know what actions to take on various lanes and loads is one way truckload providers could leverage an API to pull data and prioritize lanes. Of course, that is only as valuable as the ability for such providers to leverage APIs. For those using a dashboard or user-interface within SONAR, a better option is to leverage Lane Scorecard to recognize trends across multiple lanes that terminate or originate in port cities.

Lower detention and demurrage Risk with real-time data-driven decision-making with ocean freight data

Ocean freight data is invaluable in supply chain management and planning drayage moves. By following the aforementioned steps, truckload providers can apply ocean import data and insights to reduce can detention and demurrage risk. Learn more about how your organization can do the same by requesting a SONAR demo via the button below.

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