Nightmare Overland Albin 35 TE Shipper/Transport

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DKramer
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Mon May 01, 2017 7:21 pm

I am a new Albin 35 TE owner in the middle of a boat owner's worst nightmare. I just bought an Albin 35 TE in Jacksonville FL and shipping it to the west coast. I gave them dimensions and a weight of 18,000 lbs. (based on survey) to the shipping company.

The driver came and worked with the boat yard to load the boat. They used a two axel trailer with a ball hitch (not a gooseneck trailer) and a dualy pickup truck. The shippers came recommended and so I went with it.

I received a call saying everything was on time only to learn later things where far from fine. The trailer kept breaking down and they said my boat was heavier than I stated (18,000lbs). I was never told to remove water or fuel. The boat has half tanks of fuel and some water.

Here's the kicker: The trailer is broken down, 10 days overdue, they do not answer emails, they are unclear about the location of the boat (will not tell me). They just tell me they are going to move it to another heavier trailer and get it on the way. They claim my boat is heavier than stated, extra charges will apply.

Also, they are very poor at communicating, don't answer emails, don't provide clear information and I believe they are not going through Truck Scales. I also believe that this was a operator that exceeded the capabilities of his equipment.

They have my boat and I feel there are limited options. Do I give them time or put my foot down and risk pissing them off and making things worse. I literally feel as though my boat has been kidnapped.

Does anyone know of resources and/or options? I am dealing with a shipper that contracts out the work and I have very limited options.

The boat is insured but Insurance won't do anything until a claim is filed. The police? no crime yet. I have asked for pictures of boat to no avail. I just get "don't worry" everything is fine. The boat is now 10 days overdue.

Perhaps the better business bureau, attorney general? What are my options?

I hope the shipper is able to get it on another trailer and get the boat delivered but hope is a very weak position to be in.

Any attorneys or Law enforcement that can provide direction would be great.
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Last edited by DKramer on Wed May 10, 2017 2:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jeremyvmd
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Mon May 01, 2017 10:33 pm

Yikes. We're u there for the loading? Even at 18k lbs that's a little scary on that trailer! I don't honestly know what your recourse is. But I would refuse to pay any extra for "overweight" without proof. For me I would want to be there when they put it on a scale then be there when they weighed the empty trailer!
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jleonard
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Tue May 02, 2017 11:30 am

18 k is a little heavy for a ball hitch. Which means it's heavy for that trailer.
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DCatSea
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Tue May 02, 2017 4:17 pm

Yikes indeed. That is one nice looking 35TE. I really do hope you get this sorted out and get to use her sooner rather than later.

My boat trailering experience is limited, but I have hauled 12000 lb. drums of high voltage copper cable around behind a Dodge Powerwagon (specialized trailer). Judging by the "before and after the load goes on" photos, it looks to me as if the rear wheels on the truck are showing overload with just the static load on, let alone the haul weight.
Not sure what action you can take, but I agree with Jeremyvmd that you should try to get the rig weighed somehow; and then take action based on the results. The driver should have refused the load if he had any concerns about weight or the trailer. I hate to say this, but overkill is preferred when shipping.
Did the haulage company give you any idea of the route they were taking, or if they had asked for "large load" escorts from local DMVs or Police Depts.? That might give you an idea of where they are in the journey, and at the least tell you how well they prepared for this haul.
Last edited by DCatSea on Tue May 02, 2017 4:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Jeremyvmd
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Tue May 02, 2017 4:24 pm

im gonna add to my previous post:
I think what we have here is a shipper that wanted the job but was woefully unprepared for exactly what they needed to do, got partway through the job, has a major issue and doesn't want you to get involved (slightly shady IMO). If they are demanding more money I would tell them you want an EXACT location for the boat and a timeframe for the boat arriving, and again I would refuse ANY additional monies without hard proof that the weight was significantly different. I would also play hardball - be prepared to higher a lawyer...but ive been accused of being something that rhymes with rick....
I still say they overloaded that trailer...
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DCatSea
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Tue May 02, 2017 4:36 pm

One quick question: Did you arrange this through the haulage company directly, or through a consolidator (like U-ship)? If the latter they may bear some responsibility.
Doug and Georgia Craig
"Mazboot" - 1984 27 FC #142
Zodiac 9' HP
Tribe 9.5 yak
Rockhold Creek, Deale MD

DKramer
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Wed May 03, 2017 3:01 pm

DCatSea wrote:
Tue May 02, 2017 4:36 pm
One quick question: Did you arrange this through the haulage company directly, or through a consolidator (like U-ship)? If the latter they may bear some responsibility.
It was through Seven Seas Marine Group but once they dispatch you on your own and have to deal with the operator/driver

DKramer
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Wed May 03, 2017 3:03 pm

DKramer wrote:
Wed May 03, 2017 3:01 pm
DCatSea wrote:
Tue May 02, 2017 4:36 pm
One quick question: Did you arrange this through the haulage company directly, or through a consolidator (like U-ship)? If the latter they may bear some responsibility.
It was through Seven Seas Marine Group but once they dispatch you, you are on your own and have to deal with the operator/driver
Jeremyvmd wrote:
Tue May 02, 2017 4:24 pm
im gonna add to my previous post:
I think what we have here is a shipper that wanted the job but was woefully unprepared for exactly what they needed to do, got partway through the job, has a major issue and doesn't want you to get involved (slightly shady IMO). If they are demanding more money I would tell them you want an EXACT location for the boat and a timeframe for the boat arriving, and again I would refuse ANY additional monies without hard proof that the weight was significantly different. I would also play hardball - be prepared to higher a lawyer...but ive been accused of being something that rhymes with rick....
I still say they overloaded that trailer...

DKramer
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Wed May 03, 2017 3:06 pm

Jeremyvmd wrote:
Mon May 01, 2017 10:33 pm
Yikes. We're u there for the loading? Even at 18k lbs that's a little scary on that trailer! I don't honestly know what your recourse is. But I would refuse to pay any extra for "overweight" without proof. For me I would want to be there when they put it on a scale then be there when they weighed the empty trailer!
Yes, the trailer is way overloaded. I was not there for loading. They are saying that my boat was over the 18,000 that I listed from the survey and now I need to pay extra and for trailer repair.

They have my boat and there is very little one can do...

Jeremyvmd
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Wed May 03, 2017 3:10 pm

Actually there is a whole lot you can do. They don't own the boat and they work for YOU. Not the other way around. If they are claiming excess weight then it's up to them to prove it! Not only that but if they are saying you have to pay for trailer repairs you not only have a right to know what the manufacturer rated the trailer at but the maintenance that was done on it as well the the circumstances of the damage. They have to prove the loss before you have to pay. I would get a lawyer asap!!!
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tbnolin
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Wed May 03, 2017 7:42 pm

Our 40 NSC was shipped to the new owner from Stuart, FL to the West coast, I believe, on a low boy 18 wheeler. I know it is a much heavier boat....but I agree...overkill is much better! Sorry to hear of all pains you are going through. Keep us updated.
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whwells
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Wed May 03, 2017 11:52 pm

Kramer: What a mess. I have been in similar situations with boat shipping. First, did you purchase coverage for the specific shipment from your carrier? You are often told they have cargo coverages that will protect you. Shipper may have a large deductible. When my former 35te was shipped the boat hauler damaged the bottom of the boat but when I went to make a claim on it's arrival the carrier reported a 15,000.00 deductible. I learned from that experience to require an endorsement ahead of shipping naming me as an additional insured and direct contact between the hauler cargo carrier with me. No written endorse no ship.
Well, the only thing that saved my bacon on the damaged Albin hull was that I had purchased back up trip coverages with the Traveler's. The deductible was 4,000.00 but better than the hauler's coverages. Suing the guy is difficult because they move around like rubber balls and if a corporation it's usually Nevada or some place away from their home base if they have one.
Don't pay them a dime until you have the boat in the expected condition. They will try to refuse delivery until fully paid. Call the police locally and see if they will help. If you know the State and Town the boat is located in you may
want to call the local police for help. Maybe even hire an investigator to help you locate the boat if you at least know the state. Put your Marine insurance company on notice of the problem in writing so they don't come back and
claim lack of timely reporting.
Your selling broker should have advised against shipping without non pumped tanks. We paid to get the water and fuel out and into 50 gallon barrels before shipping. I was told not to ship without removal.
Everything will likely work out and my comments are just based upon my own bad experience. Sometime I will tell you about the Luhrs shipment from Mobile.
Wish I had something positive to say to you, but if the boat location is unknown that is difficult. Is the shipper one of the U Ship people. They will tell you they have no responsibility and their shipper are independent contractors.
They will take your complaints and send a note to shipper they are not doing the right thing and then tell you they have no enforcement powers. I will never use them again either.
Wish I had some good news. Hoping things have worked out for you.
Howard

whwells
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Thu May 04, 2017 12:03 am

Kramer: On the positive side these things do work themselves out. You purchased a beautiful boat and one of the very rare twin Cummins so it will be worthwhile when you look back on these times. Wishing you well!
Howard

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DCatSea
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Thu May 04, 2017 7:05 pm

One final thought. Once you locate the rig with your boat on it, do all you can to identify the name and rating of the trailer, and get the information on file and film. I am sure that a 2-axle, ball-hitch trailer is not an appropriate choice for your 35TE, even at 18000lbs. (BTW I discussed your case with our marina manager, and he agreed.)
If you read the forum for trailering, you will see that for the 27FC, which, at 6500lb or so is way less than your boat, most trailing owners use a 3-axle trailer at least, and a goose-neck hitch.
I would hope that you have a case against the haulage company, the consolidator, and maybe even the loading boatyard. That said, I am not a lawyer.

Wish you well; this must a real nightmare for you.
Doug and Georgia Craig
"Mazboot" - 1984 27 FC #142
Zodiac 9' HP
Tribe 9.5 yak
Rockhold Creek, Deale MD

DKramer
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Fri May 05, 2017 11:52 am

DCatSea wrote:
Thu May 04, 2017 7:05 pm
One final thought. Once you locate the rig with your boat on it, do all you can to identify the name and rating of the trailer, and get the information on file and film. I am sure that a 2-axle, ball-hitch trailer is not an appropriate choice for your 35TE, even at 18000lbs. (BTW I discussed your case with our marina manager, and he agreed.)
If you read the forum for trailering, you will see that for the 27FC, which, at 6500lb or so is way less than your boat, most trailing owners use a 3-axle trailer at least, and a goose-neck hitch.
I would hope that you have a case against the haulage company, the consolidator, and maybe even the loading boatyard. That said, I am not a lawyer.

Wish you well; this must a real nightmare for you.
This is very helpful, thank you. Great idea!

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