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Incompatible Freight


The truck has arrived to pick up an LTL shipment, but there is other freight already on the truck that is incompatible with the freight you plan to load.

It may be that you just don’t want your freight on the same truck as the other freight, particularly if your shipment is food-grade. But In some extreme cases, your freight and the other freight cannot legally be on the same truck, so you are barred from loading your freight.


  1. Do not load the truck.
  2. Call us with the details: photos of labels or other identifying marks on the other freight are very helpful if you can get them and send them to us.
  3. If your freight and the other freight are not legally incompatible, or if food-grade procedures preclude loading the two shipments together, then:
    • You are prohibited from putting your freight on the truck, and the driver and carrier are prohibited from allowing your freight to be loaded onto the truck;
    • If you told us, and we told the carrier, the full description of your freight, and the carrier knowingly or unknowingly sent a truck with incompatible freight already on board, then there will be no fee for rejecting the truck;
    • However, most freight is compatible with most other freight: if you did not provide us a full description of your freight, so that neither we nor the carrier could know to plan to avoid incompatibility issues, then there will be a “truck ordered, not used” fee, perhaps augmented by time and /or mileage fees, assessed by the carrier.
  4. If your freight and the other freight are legally compatible, but you would just rather not put your freight with the other freight, then:
    • We would like to know why, so that;
      1. We can tell the carrier why their truck is being rejected;
      2. We can avoid the same situation with the replacement truck that we will source for you.
  5. In this later instance, refusing the truck is considered a discretionary rejection, so there will certainly be a “truck ordered, not used” fee assessed by the carrier.
  6. We will source you a replacement truck.
    However, there are a very few instances where the ‘unfriendly’ nature of your freight and the (short) length of the trip are such that finding other freight to match with your freight is virtually impossible. In these cases, we are only able to accept your freight as an exclusive-use truckload. If this situation arises, we will advise you, and will provided an appropriate price quotation.


Freight incompatibility problems only arise with LTL shipments, where there are multiple shippers whose freight is mixed on a single truck. (In the truckload environment, the freight mix is determined exclusively by one shipper, so incompatibility problems are extremely rare, and can be quickly solved.)

The primary problem with LTL shipments is that a carrier does not normally know in advance of accepting any one shipment what the entire mix of freight that will be destined for any given truck. Therefore, so planning can become difficult unless full descriptions are available in advance for each shipment.

The broad category of food and food-related (e.g., packaging, ingredients, pet food) products is the type of freight that is most frequently involved in compatibility issues, both legal and discretionary. The next most frequently-involved type of incompatible freight is dangerous goods / hazardous materials.


In almost every case, a replacement truck is required, which creates a pick-up delay ranging from as little as an hour, to as much as a day. Depending on the time of day, the day of the week, and the destination of the freight, there could be no delivery delay, or a delivery delay of up to a day.

In general, we source you a replacement truck that does not have freight incompatibility problems, for pick-up the same day.