Last month, deputies in Canadian County, Oklahoma pulled over an 18-wheeler semi that had been swerving across the highway. When they searched the truck’s haul, they found the unthinkable — 50 packages of marijuana inside a 1988 Chevrolet S10 Blazer. All added up, that accounts for about half a million dollars’ worth of pot.
The next time you make plans to have your car shipped from one state to another, be sure to double- (or even triple-) check the vehicle hauling company you decide to give your business to. Otherwise, your car might just end up next to an old-school Blazer loaded up with illegal drugs, and that’s certainly not a good way to get your car to its destination on time.
We don’t know the full specifics of the case, either, which means the person who hired the car transport company could have been unaware of its ulterior uses. Still, here’s a nice checklist you can keep in mind the next time you’re scouting out auto transport companies to help take your car from one part of the country to another.
1. What kind of carrier are you looking for?
Car and truck transport companies tend to have two different types of hauling vehicles for their patrons: open and enclosed. Obviously, enclosed carriers provide a bit more protection, but they can also be a bit more costly. The extra money covers any potential for rain damage or stray rocks that can fly up from the road and crack the windows or scratch the exterior. Both are economical options when compared to driving the car yourself across the country, though.
2. What’s the company’s insurance policy?
Every vehicle hauling company has to have insurance, but there are degrees of coverage. It’s worth probing into exactly what will be covered and for how long, especially if you’re investing in a long-term trip (coast-to-coast, north-to-south, etc.). Most companies won’t insure personal belongings left inside your car though, so always do a thorough inspection before you load it up into the carrier.
3. What kind of condition is the car in?
Ready-to-ship vehicles should have charged batteries, full tires and topped-off fluids. On the other hand, you might be able to save some money by dwindling your gas tank down to about a quarter full. Lighter cars typically make for cheaper shipping costs. Any technical issues (especially those with the starter) should be written down and told to the company up front.
When it comes to car shipping, you really can’t ever be too careful. Assumptions and a lack of research just might make your car the mule in a drug-smuggling operation — and you don’t have the time, the patience or the money for a federal investigation. Instead, keep the three tips above in mind to put your vehicle hauling fears aside, then let the experts do the transport work for you. Find out more here.