In a perfect world we would all like to assume that every single shipment runs smoothly, and all shipments received on the other side are undamaged. Sadly, this is not the case, and some shipments are lost or damaged along the way.

The three main ways a shipment can come through damaged is the following:

Handling errors: When items are not clearly marked as fragile or non stackable, these items are often not handled as gently as we’d like them to be. Workers at the airlines and docks are under pressure to get these goods loaded as quickly as possible, and it is often the case that some items will be handled incorrectly.

Impact damage: Impact damage does not only occur when a package is bumped or dropped, this can also happen when a package is too loosely packed and there is substantial movement inside.

Moisture: Water damage can come from unlikely sources. If a package is improperly sealed, moisture can infiltrate from outside and affect sensitive products. Alternately , shifting temperature and humidity can cause excessive condensation to build up—a hazard on long-distance shipments. The use of high-quality, pressure-sensitive tape can provide an impenetrable seal and the use of desiccants, like silica gel packets, can address condensation.

“When shipping a product, it is a very good idea to always imagine the worst that can happen to your package, imagine it being tossed across a room, incorrectly packed under a heavy package and being crushed. If you really want to ensure a shipment is covered, a shipment can be insured” says Ryan Burgess, director of Pioneer Freight.