Shipping Storage Containers
A shipping container is made with the strength and durability to endure shipment, storage, and handling; this ranges from the large steel boxes to the corrugated ones. These storage containers are usually used in intermodal shipments.
There are a lot of types of shipping storage containers that exist. Corrugated boxes are containers used for shipping and are made of corrugated fiberboard. It is strong enough to handle shipment, and is also lightweight and recyclable. Wooden boxes are used in shipping dense and heavy items; the government and the military often make use of wooden boxes for their shipments. Crates are large containers used to transport large items; a bulk box is used in storing and shipping of items in bulk quantities. Insulated shipping containers are used for shipment of products such as foods, chemicals, and pharmaceuticals. It is used to preserve a product’s freshness. An intermediate bulk container is used in transporting bulk materials and fluids.
A system called containerization is used in intermodal freight transport. This utilizes intermodal containers made of weathering steel; these containers are loaded, unloaded, stacked, transferred from one transport to another, and transported over long distances. All of these are done without the container being opened. All of the containers are numbered tracked, and handled by machines such as cranes and forklift trucks. Containerization significantly reduced transport costs because it eliminated the need for warehousing, and did not make use of hundreds and thousands of workers to handle the shipment. It also reduced shipping time and reduced the chances for theft.
Aircraft make use of a unit load device, or ULD, which is used to load and store luggage, mail, and freight on aircraft. Large quantities of cargo may be placed in a single container, which means that there are fewer units to load on an aircraft to save time. There are also specialized storage containers called transit cases and road cases which are used in shipping fragile equipment such as cameras, instruments, and audio visual equipment. A transit case is a hard case for protecting certain items during transportation. These cases usually have foam in the inside which cushions the contents from shock and vibration. The exterior gives a protection against mechanical damage. Road cases, on the other hand, are containers specifically built to cater to musical instruments, audio video equipment, and film production equipment. Music bands usually make use of road cases.
With all the usefulness of storage containers, they also have issues and hazards. Containers transported on ships have a chance of falling into the sea, especially during storms. The containers are heavy, meaning that they will easily sink and those that manage to stay afloat are difficult to retrieve. Thousands of containers are lost at sea every year.
One of the dire issues of them all concerning containers is that they are susceptible to being used to smuggle contraband. Due to the fact that there are a large number of containers being shipped at a given time, not all of them have the chance to be examined. It is also said that these containers may also have been used to transport criminals or terrorists. Measures have been taken to ensure high-risk cargo are examined and scanned thoroughly at the port of departure, although this is still not a safe bet.
Shipping containers were made to handle the stresses of being shipped and transported. It is not a secret that some containers are just flung or thrown into their loading transport. This is why more stronger and more durable containers were made to withstand shipment processes. Certain containers are made to fit particular types of cargo, and using these will make sure that items will arrive unscathed at their destination.