Impact Of The Development Of The Container System

Read Complete Research Material


The economic and global impact of the development of the container system in transportation logistics

The Economic and Global Impact of the Development of the Container System in Transportation Logistics


Webster defines container as "a box, carton, crate, etc. used for holding goods. The verb containerize therefore means the act of placing goods in a container, an activity which is not new. The element of containerizing which is new, however, lies in the use of a "box" with the following characteristics:

of a permanent character and accordingly strong enough to be suitable for repeated use;

specially designed to facilitate the carriage of goods, by one or more modes of transport, with out intermediate reloading:

fitted with devices permitting its ready handling, particularly its transfer from one mode to another;

so designed as to be easy to full and empty and (e); having an internal volume of one cubic meter or more (Immer, 1964).

The Origin of Containerization

During the early 1800's large operators used containers to protect cargo from the elements and in 1847 the container appeared in the form of piggyback operations; that is, some railroads provided tariffs and services under which farm wagons loaded with produce could be moved without transfer of lading. This was a form of containerization. It was also an early form of piggyback-especially when the farm wagon contained pigs.

It may be argued that this was "piggy-backing" and not containerization. Strictly speaking, however, piggybacking and fishy-backing today are forms of container service, with the variation that the container or box is capable of being moved along the highway as well as being rolled on or off ships or flat cars. The development of this early service was scattered and sporadic, and was eventually discontinued.

Prior to the advent of long distance motor truck service, the household goods mover's industry used containers for shipment of household goods by rail. These containers, though often reused, were especially constructed for specific shipments. Later, a permanent type container of steel was built, measuring 8` x 8` x 14`. A sizeable fleet of these so-called Port-O-Vans was developed, and household goods were shipped via rail to all points in the United States. The household movers, however, experienced difficulty in the retrieval of containers and in obtaining prompt transportation for containers from points of origin. After development of motor truck transportation, this van service was exchanged for this more flexible method of transportation (Constantine, 1966).

During the 1920's and 1930's a container service was offered by the New York Central and Pennsylvania railroads, but the rate structure and other problems eventually discouraged their growth. It was not until the 1950's that the present container "explosion" was touched off (Meyers, 1967).

Economical & Global Impact

The basic premise of containerization is lower costs resulting from a number of factors.

Reduces Damage

The protection provided by containers greatly reduces physical damage and breakage of cargo enabling companies to have their goods arrive in better condition, a real advantage in ...
Related Ads