Load Shifting & Shipment Delay Solutions with Carrier Services at Loup

Released October 19, 2022.
Written by David Soukup, manager Carrier Services

When you have an intermodal load shift and you don’t know what to do, who do you call? It’s not the Ghostbusters. It’s the Loup Carrier Services Team. Loup has a dedicated team who contracts the rework and documents the line of road intermodal leaners and load shifts. If the container is over the road (outside an intermodal ramp) and leaning, the Loup Carrier Services team coordinates with their vendor network to find the best option from a time and cost perspective.

Per Keith Lee, general director of Shipment Quality, “Loup provides intrinsic value with ensuring we can recuperate the contractor and adjustment costs from customers should it have been caused by their negligence.” Loup is integral in providing communication and documentation for various departments about the load shifting so that the right party is responsible for the cost and then mitigate future delays with load shifting. Additionally, Loup is focused on contracting the rework for the container in a timely manner at the most competitive rates to protect the efficiency of Union Pacific’s operations.

The process starts when the Operating and Mechanical teams identify the load shifting on a line of road rail car or the container triggers one of the high wide detectors across the system when moving on a train. The rail car with the leaning containers is set out and Mechanical puts the rail car in an LS (load shift) Hold. Once in a hold, the Mechanical team then submits an email with the rail car and containers in question, container location information and confirmation of crane accessibility, and any photos that can be provided of the lean. Loup is notified through this email group and then coordinates with their vendor network to schedule the rework. Loup also communicates with CC&S (Customer Care & Services) to provide details to the customer about the status of their shipment and communicate the issue causing the shipment delay. Loup coordinates with the vendor about the rework through the entire process and ensures communication is made to Mechanical once completed. Mechanical releases the rail car from LS hold.

Loup uses a ticketing system to enter the information about the load shift which is shared with Union Pacific’s Accounting team to compile the information for the claim of the rework with the customer. The same information in the ticket is then utilized by the Shipment Quality Team to problem solve with the shipper similar to their process for load shifts inside the intermodal terminals. The ultimate goal through Loup’s efforts of documenting and recuperating costs from customers is to mitigate the number of load shifts on the railroad, thereby protecting the safety and reliability of Union Pacific’s operations. “Loup provides an excellent service that quickly helps address an over the road leaner to reduce delays and ensure the unit is safe to continue on rail. The follow up documentation also assists with preventing them moving forward by giving the opportunity to highlight if improper loading by the customer is what caused the unit to shift,” said Dustin Scheel, director of Carrier Relations.

Contact Information and Process for Line of Road Load Shifts and Leaners:
Email: loadshift@up.com
Phone: 800-550-9227 (Loup Carrier Services)

Contact Information for Load Shifts and Leaners Inside an Intermodal Yard:
Email: int_insp@up.com