Blog Domestic Freight Shipping

Innovations in Warehousing Helping Businesses Keep Pace

Innovations in Warehousing Helping Businesses Keep Pace By Dan Cser    Warehouses are getting fitter, faster, smarter, wonkier, increasingly nimble -- and more essential than ever. Let’s call it an “Extreme Makeover,” distinguished by physical and operational changes to shape up warehouses for a disruptive future of greater expectations and intensified challenges. This much we know for certain: The warehouse market is red-hot, ignited by the boom in online shopping, e-commerce and the so-called “Now Economy.” Real estate industry reports show vacancy rates at below three percent in key logistics markets, and – despite millions of square feet under construction – available warehouse space has lagged demand for nearly a decade. The sweet spot for many warehouses continues to be near suburban airports and major highways. But other trends are emerging. Among those:   Smaller, but Taller To meet demands for same-day and next-day delivery, more warehouses are popping up in densely populated urban areas. With limited room to spread…

Electric Trucks are Charging Ahead in 2019

Electric Trucks are Charging Ahead in 2019 By Dan Cser   We’ve been told for some time that heavy commercial electric trucks – including big rigs – are just around the corner.   But when will electric trucks actually turn the corner and hit the highways in a big way?   Increasingly, it looks like this is the year we will get some important answers.   Electric truck makers are charged up by a growing list of orders and a batch of high-profile tests that will tell us much about progress on the most daunting challenges: range, power, battery weight, and battery charging speed and access.   The biggest concern for freight haulers using electric trucks is the possibility of losing power and having an electric truck shut down amidst a long-distance delivery. That possibility -- and the nagging concern that goes with it – is known as range anxiety.   The cure calls for more powerful batteries and a charging infrastructure that is widespread, easy to use and fast. At present, battery electric trucks can take hours to recharge…

Truckers are the Heroes of the Highways

Truckers are the Heroes of the Highways By Dan Cser   America’s truckers have heart – miles and miles of heart.   At ICAT Logistics DTW, we are struck almost daily by the concern, compassion and courage of the men and women who deliver goods to a nation.   Time and again, we see reports of truckers who make life just a little better – sometimes saving the day – by going the extra mile for others.   For us, it is a cause for appreciation and, at times, a source of inspiration. And it’s something we are pleased to share as a salute to the heroes of America’s highways. Here is a sampling:   A Highway Angel Matthew Kondrick, a driver for Melton Truck Lines, was battling heavy rain and winds when he saw that a tree had fallen and crushed two cars. A former firefighter, Kondrick pulled his truck into place to block traffic, grabbed his tools and ran to the cars. Finding the occupants alive and shaken, he grabbed a soda and some treats for the victims, keeping the scene lit until paramedics arrived. For his efforts,…

Great Lakes, Great Economic Growth

Great Lakes, Great Economic Growth Thanks to an exceptional multimodal freight transportation system that connects it to the rest of the world, the Great Lakes Region is continuing to flourish economically, and freight traffic is growing stronger than ever. Together the five Great Lakes comprise the world’s largest surface freshwater system and are home to U.S.- and Canada-flag ships, as well as an array of freighters from across the globe.  The region, with its network of U.S. and Canadian highways, rail and shipping networks, not only serves nearly 200 Fortune 500 companies located in the U.S. and Canada — including automakers and Tier One suppliers — but also provides an efficient route to parts of Europe and Asia, with better delivery times and costs than some ports along the U.S. East Coast. The latest data show that the region generates a global Gross Domestic Product (GDP) that is larger than Japan’s, Germany’s or the that of the United Kingdom.  Only China and the whole of the U.S. have greater GDPs. …

Nurturing Supplier Relationships for Mutual Benefit

Nurturing Supplier Relationships for Mutual Benefit Of all the things that keep a business running smoothly – ample financing, strong products or services, effective marketing, an enthusiastic and professional team, and interested customers -- we put supplier collaboration near the top of the list at ICAT Logistics DTW. When your suppliers are cordial and cooperating with you, one another and among themselves, there is no limit to what you can accomplish.  When they’re at odds, competing for attention or resentful of how they are being treated, you and your customers are bound to suffer.  Organizational bliss doesn’t happen by accident.   It takes consistent effort, nurturing, listening, and a willingness to make concessions to keep the crimps out of a supply chain. Last week in this space we talked about vetting suppliers, and that is a first step.  But once you’ve established a relationship the next step is to nurture and develop it.  At no time does that become more important than when economic conditions take a turn. …


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