Logistics is the concern of moving items and people around, and having the correct room, transportation, safety, and finances to transport items. This makes for an enormous industry in the United States today, seeing as delivering medical equipment installation items, indoor kiosks, custom packaging, medical supplies, signs, photo booths, and more must be done. Most often, this is a partnership, and warehousing services, transport, medical equipment installation, and more is handled by both a client and hired help. An electronic kiosks may be too large and heavy for a company’s own workers to handle, so if a kiosk needs to be set up somewhere such as a shopping mall, hospital, or a trade show, logistics companies may be hired to help. The same is true of medical equipment installation, and a hospital may rely heavily on medical equipment installation crews to get the job done right. What is there to know about logistics today?
Transport for medical supplies, kiosks, groceries, furniture, and much more is done with land-based vehicles in most cases, such as trucks. Thousands of small carrier companies can be found across the United States today, and in exchange for charging invoices to clients, these companies will lend their trucks and crews for any job. Even a freight broker may be used to help arrange a partnership between a carrier and a client shipper, and help negotiate and track the logistics of a delivery. Larger quantities of goods are often delivered by train or plane, but for many other deliveries made for a smaller client, trucks are employed instead. Such vehicles can travel nearly anywhere and will have just the right amount of storage space to transport those items for a fair price.
The trucks themselves may vary in their storage space, the distance they can travel, and any special accommodations. Some trucks are known as reefer units, and these reefer trailers have refrigeration units built into them to cool the interior. In short, they are fridges or freezers on wheels, and there is quite a demand for them. Many carrier companies are adding reefers to their fleets so they can take on grocery transport jobs, since grocery store clients have frozen goods as well as dry goods to transport. Dairy products, wine and liquor, frozen foods of all sorts, and meat must be kept cooled during transport, so these reefer trucks will protect them during delivery. Meanwhile, other trucks and their crews may be specialized to carry hazardous materials such as nuclear fuel rods, canisters of flammable oil or natural gas, or dry ice. Crews will be certified and trained by OSHA standards to handle these materials, and may use equipment such as gas masks or full body suits while handling them.
Making the Delivery
A client may be a hospital that needs a new electronic kiosk in its front lobby, or a shopping mall that wants a photo booth or a kiosk set up in the middle of the mall for guests to use. In cases such as these, the client will have already purchased or rented the item, and contact carriers in their area who can deliver it safely to the premises. As mentioned earlier, a freight broker may be consulted for this, and freight brokers will work with the carrier to provide live tracking information to the shipper. Many trucks today have GPS systems in them, and this is the arena of geospatial data analysis. Experts may track where a delivery truck is and how fast it is going, and the truck’s driver may also provide updates as they arrive at certain checkpoints along the route. This may be helpful if something goes wrong during the delivery, such as if the truck breaks down or if hazards such as rock slides, floods, or fallen trees obstruct the road and force a delay.
In some cases, a client may be one of several that’s making use of a single truck, and this is known as LTL, or less than truckload. One kiosk might not take up all the room in a truck’s trailer, and renting all that space is a waste of money. Instead, several clients rent it together, and only pay for the cargo space that their respective loads occupy.