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Different Types of Long-Haul Trucks

Flatbed trucks, refrigerated trucks, vented vans

When it comes to long-haul shipping, there are numerous truck options that can leave newbie shippers feeling plenty overwhelmed. Do I need a flatbed? What about a van? What are the differences and which one is right for me?

Before you dive into the world of long-haul trucks, it’s important to do your research, starting with your shipment. With a quick analysis you can establish whether your shipment is less than a truckload (LTL), a full truckload (FTL) or a partial shipment. Answering these imperative questions will take a good chunk of the guesswork out of making your decision.

The Cargo: What are you shipping? It’s a good idea to have the weight and dimensions of your cargo in mind. Depending on size, you may need to think about using pallets to stabilize cargo.

The Value: What is the value of your cargo? When does your shipment need to arrive at its destination?

The Conditions: Refrigeration, straps, blankets....pay attention to the little details; what extras will your shipment require?

Common vehicles to choose from

Now you know the specifics of your cargo, so it’s time to learn about truck types and the differences of each. There are three main trucks commonly utilized for over road shipping: flatbed trucks, refrigerated (reefer) trucks and vented vans.

Flatbed trucks

These versatile trucks are handy for transporting cargo that is bulky, such as construction equipment, cars or mobile homes. A simple cab and a long, open cargo trailer allows for easy loading and unloading since there are no trailer sides or roof. You can choose a flatbed with a level trailer to ease the loading process even more, or for taller hauls, go for the drop deck trailer.

Refrigerated trucks (reefer trucks)

Shipping perishable items such as food, plants or pharmaceuticals can add extra pressure to deliver fresh cargo in a timely manner. Refrigerated trucks are specially designed to handle climate sensitive loads, and the internal temperature of the truck can be controlled by the shipper. They also come in a variety of sizes to fit your needs.

Vented vans (dry vans)

If you’re not shipping perishable goods then the vented van (dry van) might be the right pick for you. These covered trailers have vents installed at the front and back to circulate airflow and offer protection from the elements. They are perfect for transporting dry goods such as nursery stock, certain plastics and foods.

Which truck is right for you?

America 1 has a fleet of vehicles to handle any load. Between our 53-foot vented vans, our variety of flatbeds, and our 53-foot reefers, there's no freight we can't handle. Contact us and our customer service representatives will help you find the perfect match for your shipping needs.

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