How Heavy Machinery Shipping Works

Have you ever seen heavy machinery being shipped? The kind where the truck is taking up a lane and a half and moving some huge engine or construction equipment? Well, there is a whole lot of preparation that goes into place before that truck ever even hits the road.

There’s preparation that must be done by the shipper, transportation provider, driver, receiver, and anyone else involved in the process. There are four main steps when shipping heavy machinery. First, the shipper needs to evaluate the specifications of the machinery being shipped. Then, they must communicate these specs to whoever is taking care of the transportation. Third, the actual shipment happens and then finally, evaluation.

Evaluate What’s Being Shipped

The first thing that needs to be done in the process of shipping heavy machinery is to know absolutely everything about the shipment. This includes the dimensions, weight, timeframe, need for special equipment, distance, noting if the machine needs to be covered, and more.

Each one of these factors is going to impact the shipment. With all of the right information the transportation provider will be able to find the best match for the freight. Additionally, a good transportation provider will know what information is needed will mention if anything was left out. However, that means everything must be communicated to the transportation provider.

Communicate the Specification

On most shipments everyone only needs to know the information that impacts them, but the transportation provider should know everything. That way, they can make sure that everyone else, such as the driver, knows what they need to know. When it comes to heavy machinery or any oversized freight, this communication is vital to ensure everything is in place.

Additionally, with open communication they will be able to figure out what is needed. For heavy machinery shipping, chances are you are going to need a flatbed, however, maybe a step-deck will be needed or double drop, or, maybe there’s certain insurance that you’ll need. There’s a lot that goes into shipping heavy machinery. Because of this, partnering with a company that knows what they are doing is vital.

The Shipment

Now that everything is known and has been communicated, the shipment takes place. This could be as easy as picking up the machinery and dropping it off. It could also be include getting escort cars, disassembling the machinery, and obtaining certain approvals.

The most important thing is that communication stays open. The shipper needs to know exactly what is going on with their delivery, the transportation provider should be passing all relevant information back and forth, and the driver should know if there are any special instructions or changes.


Once the order is done, everyone should look back and figure out what went right and what went wrong. Then, find out how the things that went wrong could be improved for the next shipment. A lot of heavy machinery shipping is unique and takes experience in the field to know what to do.

How HTL Brings Heavy Machinery Shipping to the Next Level

At HTL Freight, we know heavy machinery shipping. We have been working within the industry for nearly 40 years and have great relations with many carriers, plenty of which do flatbed. We follow our 3 R system which means we are responsible, reliable, and responsive on each load. This means that every carrier and shipper that we partner get the best service. We make sure that we follow through on our promises and keep everyone on the same page. We do this because we know that managing a supply chain can be difficult, so we try to make the transportation component easy.

To see if HTL Freight is the right company for you contact us and we’ll review how we can help you and your team. Also, if you want to get started immediately, then request a quote now.