Case Studies


We've helped a broad range of customers with their most challenging cargo needs.

Examples of how we turned tough shipping challenges into success for our clients.

Oversize, Overweight and Right up our Alley

Oversize, Overweight and Right up our Alley The ICAT Logistics DTW team recently put a particularly large package onto a truck traveling from Detroit to Norfolk, Virginia where it was loaded by crane onto a flat rack and then onto a ship to begin the 10,300 nautical mile trip through the Panama Canal and ultimately to Shanghai, China. Our team called it “The Beast to the East.” How big was it? The package was 30 feet long, 8.5 feet wide and 10 feet high. It weighed 42 tons. Certainly large, but not in a class of its own from ICAT’s perspective. “We’ve shipped about 10 of these for this client,” said Monica Saladin, Ocean Manager at ICAT Logistics DTW. One machine that was slightly smaller was sent to India last month, for example. “There’s a great deal of coordination and planning required. And we’re really good at that,” Saladin said. To ensure the safe and timely movement of an oversize, overweight shipment like this one, Saladin described a series of steps that are followed,…

Brazil to Detroit: Right on Time

Brazil to Detroit: Right on Time How do you get from Bahia, Brazil, to Detroit? If you’re moving nine crates of vehicle side panels that weigh three tons, as ICAT Logistics DTW did in August, the answer is: Very carefully. That’s because moving such heavy material 6,000 miles isn’t only about getting the right trucks and airplanes. It’s about planning. In Brazil, and wherever ICAT ships industrial materials around the world, the company maintains a close working relationship with the agents who follow their clients’ cargo through customs and who worry that every aspect of the process has been handled beforehand. The team cuts no corners; its preplanning is as extensive in detail as the shipment itself. It’s about packing. The cargo, travelling first by truck from Bahia to Sao Paulo in early August, could arrive dented, bent or creased if not packed properly. That’s why ICAT repacked the panels using VCI paper (volatile chemical inhibitor) to protect the pieces from humidity and…

No Need for Big Headaches with Oversize Shipments

No Need for Big Headaches with Oversize Shipments An oversize freight load doesn’t have to cause oversize problems – as long as you have the right shipping partner. That was good news for a Michigan manufacturer whose experience shipping four-ton dynamometers to international ports had been so poorly handled by a previous shipping company, the freight was arriving in parcels and on different ships. That caused confusion, missed deadlines and unhappy customers. “There is a lot of detailed logistical planning that goes into shipments like these,” says Monica Saladin, Ocean Manager at ICAT Logistics DTW. “You have to do your homework and you have to have a strong network of capable suppliers all over the world. I think that is why we earned the business. “Complex shipping challenges are one of our specialties.” Dynamometers, which are used to measure the force, torque and power on engines — come in all sizes. In this case, the largest part of each unit is too massive for even the largest standard…

Lacking Papers, Overseas Freight was Dead in the Water

Lacking Papers, Overseas Freight was Dead in the Water A Pennsylvania electronics equipment manufacturer recently learned an expensive lesson about international shipping when it sent a $39,000 X-ray machine to a customer in China. The shipment made it to China, all right, but the freight carrier failed to follow some of the basic extra steps necessary to ensure that the machinery would actually reach its final destination. The Chinese government flagged the shipment and confiscated it. The shipper frantically tried calling us to fix the problem but by then it was too late. “The client contacted us after the fact. The minute we heard what had happened we put our international team to work, including our partner in China,” said Chris Cser, Director of International at ICAT Logistics DTW. “Unfortunately our client asked for our assistance too late. The equipment was gone. There was nothing we could do once the machinery was confiscated. And since the client’s insurance carrier won’t pay claims for government-seized…

ICAT Charters 747 to Deliver the Goods – and a 40 Percent Savings

ICAT Charters 747 to Deliver the Goods – and a 40 Percent Savings One of the world’s biggest auto manufacturers was staring at a costly production delay last month – until they called us. Their problem -- which we immediately took on as our responsibility, too – was that their assemblies for a prototype were in Spain while their manufacturing facilities were an ocean apart in Michigan. With the Spanish citrus industry hitting peak production and using nearly all commercial planes to ship their oranges and lemons around the world, regular air freight was an expensive and time-consuming option involving connecting flights or a road-feeder service. Our solution: Get our own plane. Fly direct. And save time and money. We quickly procured a Boeing 747-200 cargo freighter and went into motion. We confirmed our load plan with the charter company and instructed our local agent in Spain to coordinate with the factory and airport ground personnel. We then loaded 32 custom-built racks into five semi tractor trailers in Valencia and trucked them…


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