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Increasing Capacity and Reducing Costs: Moving Batteries Across the Border

Released February 1, 2017 Case Study

When an international shipper faced escalating costs and limited truck capacity, UPDS developed a cross-border solution to resolve these challenges.


What do you do when your shipping solution grows more costly — and at times, isn’t even available to move your product? That’s the problem one of our customers faced. This multi-national shipper of raw and finished goods relied on truck to move automotive batteries across the border. But when capacity became tight and costs soared, they needed to find an alternative.

Shipper Challenges

This shipper knew using rail could lower costs and offer greater capacity, but didn’t know where to begin. Complicating matters was the commodity they were shipping — batteries — was environmentally sensitive and required special handling.

The UPDS Solution

UPDS was ready to face these challenges, and served as a guide for the company to become rail served. Working with the customer, UPDS developed special plans for how to load the batteries into boxcars. In order for them to be transloaded between truck and train, UPDS purchased shrink wrapping equipment so the batteries could be loaded onto pallets, shrink wrapped and transferred via forklift. We also brought in our Mexico team to make cross-border shipments move quickly and efficiently.

Our Results

With this new solution in place, our customer saw significant results. By incorporating rail into their shipping strategy, they both increased capacity and reduced shipping costs, while keeping the product safe during transit. The solution was so successful, the customer eventually adopted it for multiple lanes and expanded into other commodities. By customizing a solution to our customer’s needs, they were able to adopt rail — and found a better way to ship.

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