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Forward Air finally settled, for pennies on the dollar...

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Some of you asked that when this was final I posted details. Well I suppose its final enough.

I had my YZ450 and TTR125 shipped from Rock River Powersports a few months back, and there was some damage on arrival. Evidently, they stacked something heavy on top of the crate, and also smashed the side of it in which caused quite a bit of cosmetic damage to the TTr125, and a little to my YZ450 as well.

crate.jpg

They didn't deny it, and I had my digicam with me and took damage pictures on their dock with their logo trucks in the background so there is absolutely no doubt they caused the damage. Everything was documented on the bill, and in pictures which i provided to them with the claim.

After all was said and done, replacement parts and labor to put them on totalled right at $900. I finally got an agreement from Forward air to pay the claim, and all I had to do was sign the release and wait for my $267 claim check to arrive.

I'm like &%$#@!? I emailed them for an explaination as to how they got my $900 claim down to $267 and here's the response I got back almost two weeks later from a different person.

Thank you for your email dated October 1, 2004. In it, you have asked me to clarify why our settlement offer on this claim is for $267.00. When the shipper, Rock River Power Sports, tendered this shipment to us, they did not purchase a declared value. Our default liability rate is $.50 per pound. A shipper can purchase a declared value to increase our limit of liability. Rock River did not do so in this case. Therefore, since the shipment weight was 534 pounds, our maximum liability for this shipment is limited to $267.00. Since Rock River chose not to purchase a declared value, you may want to inquire with them about any amount that is above our liability.

That's their final response on the matter. 50 cents per pound shipped is all they're going to pay.

In my email, I alluded to the possibility that my being the recipient may make me an exception to their shipping contract as everything was "shipper" this and "carrier" that but he replied this to the that question...

Your other question was whether you are bound by the transportation contract and service conditions. The short answer is yes. At the time a shipper tenders a shipment to us, you, as the consignee, are considered a third party beneficiary to the transportation contract. You stand to receive the benefits of the contract - movement of the freight from point A to point B - and you are also subject to the limits of the contract. This is the starting point and the basic premise for all transportation claims.

So there you have it...

Unless the shipper declares a value of the items shipped, they limit themselves to 50 cents per pound liability. Even if a value was declared at the time of shipping, their damage liability would have been 65 cents per pound.

To anyone considering using them, I'd say they are probably still a good bet, but know what you're signing up for and make sure its packed well. You're taking an expensive gamble...

As for my bikes, all of the damage is purely cosmetic. The factory parts just have an unbelieveable replacement value. I just really wasn't happy about having the bikes be dropped before we even got to crank them.

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Unless the shipper declares a value of the items shipped, they limit themselves to 50 cents per pound liability. Even if a value was declared at the time of shipping, their damage liability would have been 65 cents per pound.

To anyone considering using them, I'd say they are probably still a good bet, but know what you're signing up for and make sure its packed well. You're taking an expensive gamble...

quite a gamble indeed. All those people buying $6000 bikes from places like NAMB, I wonder how many of them know how little they'd get if Forward Air managed to total their brand new bike during shipment? Sure makes me think twice about buying one that way.

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i got my bike from texas by forward air, i had great service there, but the people werent so careful with the crate, luckily things were ok. Id still reccomend them.

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Man, that is some very valuable information....thanks for sharing. However, it sounds to me like you got the shaft. Can you go after the shipper for the difference?

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Man, that is some very valuable information....thanks for sharing. However, it sounds to me like you got the shaft. Can you go after the shipper for the difference?

Honestly, I probably could but the people at Rock River were so cool to me and gave me such a great deal I won't.

As I said, all of the damage was cosmetic. The bikes run fine. We'll just have to be selective as to what we fix on them.

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That is good information, sorry for your loss. Is that the crate the bikes came in? If so it looks like it was built by a monkey on a Friday.

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Makes me wonder what the hell they do to those crates. I called forward air about shipping a jetski--the guy pretty much talked me out of it. He said he couldn't promise anything-it seems those crates get wasted all the time. &%$#@!?

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Well, its nice to know I'm not the only one that has had problems with them...

They do have these big containers you can rent to ship in and those look pretty safe. Unless the truck catches fire, or falls off a bridge...

I won't ever encourage anyone to use them though.

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I would take Forward Air to small claims court.

I know people that have done the same thing to UPS and won.

They are supposed to get your goods to you undamaged.

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Was the crate covered? my brother is shipping his from NJ and they said they wont ship without plywood on the crate.

He also shaved 200$ off the cost by cutting the crate down to 70 inches, he had to take off the rear (a yamaha steel crate) wheel and fender but he got everything in there. Ill post some pics tonight.

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It sucks your bikes got damaged, but I'd place the blame squarely on the shoulders of whoever decided to ship $11,000 in bikes without insurance.

A real simple rule to use when shipping anything with any company: If you aren't ok with the possibilty the item will get lost or damaged, then insure it!"

As a truck driver who hauls mail for the United States Post Office, I can tell ya that its impossible to guarantee the safety of every one of the millions of packages I haul on a weekly basis. It's the shippers responsiblity to pack the stuff securely and insure it.

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Have you talked to Rock River? They might give you a good price on the repair parts....

And a lawyer might be able to help with Forward Air.... 😢

Good luck, don't cash the check until you've talked to a lawyer!

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From my business law classes in college, I thought it was the transport companies responsibility from the time it's picked up to the time it's delivered. I think they settled with you for the amount you specified but you didn't have to accept that settlement and should be entitled to the full amount of the damages. I could be wrong though.

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Who built the crate? Looks to me like they used a quad crate and put 2 bikes in it with some cheesy alterations that was your first problem! 😢 Who ever prepared the bikes for shipment should be held responsible not foward air.We all know that trucking, Shipping and handling is no gentle task. From the photo it looks like they used tiedowns to hold the bikes in place and only a tarp (in photo next to crate) was used for protection. The sides of the crate are wide open no support or protection there. Wheels where left on so only being held by tie downs the suspension still works and the bikes have movement. Why ship 2 bikes in one crate when they should have used the original shipping crates (1 bike per crate)? Yamaha ships thousands of these bikes to america on cargo ships in the high seas im sure they know there crates can protect there bike during shipment thats why they put 1 to a crate wheels off, forks bolted to crate, handle bars off, and triple trees bolted to top of crate to assure no movment! I have just shipped my 04 YZ250 from new jersey to new mexico in the original yamaha shipping crate (got from dealer for free)and put 1/4 inch plywood on all 4 sides plus the top (about$20.00 cost)to protect my investment and as a bonus no one can see whats inside the crate! I used forward air for shippment (Cost $275.00 Best price around) and will let you know how i make out when it arrives. You also state they gave you a good deal on the bikes but they gave you no deal on the way they shipped them! I hope this helps all who ship or plan to ship there bikes make sure you use factory crate for your style bike you can get these at the dealer for free they just throw them away! 😢cratedbikephotos002.jpg.w560h373.jpg

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I shipped my 01' WR426 to BrandonW without any issues at all. You MUST buy the insurance at the time you sign the paperwork over to the shipper. Even UPS won't insure most items over $100 without additional insurance. I had to get a cashiers check to pay for the shipment. Brandon did not want insurance and we had no issues. I did use a YZ450 crate to secure the bike with 3/8" plywood all around. That crate does not have nearly enough cross bracing and it seems odd to me that they were shipped with the front wheel on. There is one vertical bar missing in my picture but after it was installed, this was a stout crate.

CrateAlmostDone.jpg

Rich, are you saying some of the crates are made to accept the bike with the wheels on? I sure didn't see any that way when I picked up this crate to ship my bike. Mine was bolted on at the triple clamp and front axle.

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The TTRs and other smaller bikes come in pairs, frt wheels off, forks bolted to the crate and facing opposite directions. I don't know where else they're attached because I've never uncrated them....I'll take a pic if I get a chance.

I went back and looked at the damage picture again(hadn't looked at it since I 1st read the post)...I might be wrong, that may be a quad crate...

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I shipped my 01' WR426 to BrandonW without any issues at all. You MUST buy the insurance at the time you sign the paperwork over to the shipper. Even UPS won't insure most items over $100 without additional insurance. I had to get a cashiers check to pay for the shipment. Brandon did not want insurance and we had no issues. I did use a YZ450 crate to secure the bike with 3/8" plywood all around. That crate does not have nearly enough cross bracing and it seems odd to me that they were shipped with the front wheel on. There is one vertical bar missing in my picture but after it was installed, this was a stout crate.

CrateAlmostDone.jpg

Rich, are you saying some of the crates are made to accept the bike with the wheels on? I sure didn't see any that way when I picked up this crate to ship my bike. Mine was bolted on at the triple clamp and front axle.

I picked up his bike from fwd air and was there when he uncrated it. You did a very professional job of packing that bike. Very nice! You should have seen the smile on his face when he got the first piece of plywood loose enough to see the bike. 😢 Like a kid at X-mas. 😢

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