See alot of FA trucks
on I-80 between Reno and Sacramento.

I have no expertise in this…
…but that never stops me from having an opinion, or in this case, two:

  1. Does CA have a state agency, perhaps in the AG office, to deal with complaints about common carriers?
  2. Me dear old Irish mother always said to “go to the top”, in this case meaning contacting the agent/carrier’s top exec, by any means necessary. He (rarely she) might rather pay your claim than be bothered with it. Your local library can help you find the company information.

Just emailed Forward Air
with a link to this thread.

Suggest everyone do the same!


Squeeky Wheel
Good idea Andy.

Freight Terminal Personel
I work with several freight companies everyday. Concealed damage is the biggest problem, but even when there is obvious damage, the drivers and terminal managers are well trained to make this YOUR problem. The bottom line is this. If the freight co. picks the item up from the shipper in good condition, then, until it is received by the consignee at delivery, the freight company is ultimatly responsible for it’s condition. My blood boils on a daily basis from this very subject. (I feel the vein rising as i type). Andy has to know what I am talking about here. HVAC equip is like shipping eggs.

I really offer no advice just know that I sympathize with your problem. Stay on em!


what really sucks…
…is that getting a damaged boat is enough of a bummer without being jerked around by those at fault…I think shippers tend to be even more flippant when they know the amount of the claim is not worth taking legal action.

As a graduate of the School of Hard Knocks, I’d like to offer advice to would-be freight consignors & consignees:

Preacher already brought this up: If you are buying, you want the seller to make all the freight arrangements; if you are selling, you want the buyer to make the arrangements. Although either the consignee or the consignor can file a damage claim, generally, it ultimately is the responsibility of whichever party made the shipping arrangements (not who ultimately paid for it).

How many times have you seen: (on ebay especially) "I don’t want to ship this item, but if you make the arrangements, I’ll drop it off at the carrier’s loading dock for you (or deliver it to a packaging place like MailboxesRUS, etc.) This seller is probably a fellow alumnus and knows: When you ship somebody an item, even if they pay you in advance, you still are obligated to provide them the item “as described” (meaning not damaged). But when handled as in the above terms, the seller is only obligated to get it to the shipping point in good condition. This becomes the point at which the item “changes hands” or the buyer “takes delivery.” If the item then arrives damaged, it’s the buyer’s problem to take up with the carrier.

For the same reasons, it is the shipper (not the buyer) who wants to make sure the item is properly insured. But don’t just blindly pay for insurance before checking to see what is standard coverage for your item’s shipping class (you may or may not need to buy additional coverage, but if you don’t ask, you may be paying for insurance you don’t need).

Boats are certainly not the easiest items to package & ship, so as a buyer or seller, protect yourself.

Buying a canoe…
I think being able to buy new, or used canoes from people far away is a good thing. It saves most people alot of money, and effort such as finding rare items. But, buying a canoe without seeing it is simply something I am not comfortable with.

I am in the process now of trying to find some canoes, or at least a canoe locally for this type reason. I don’t like paying the shipping costs, It’s very easy to get a damage product because of the nature of the size, and shape of an item like this, and you just don’t know if it’s right unless you look at it, and paddle it. Some people are comfortable taking chances like this. I am not.

I would suggest trying you find something within driving distance next time. Also, it appears to me that if you can’t get result from the main office of FA, you should let them know your intentions of filing a small claim, and if nothing then, I’d follow through. If they didn’t allow you the time to check your product before receiving it, or didn’t ask you to check it before accepting it, they could bare the responsibility.

I would also suggest you let everyone you know that you can about this. Keep an eye on this board for people who are considering doing what you did, and educate them. There is power in sharing information, and it’s simply the right thing to do. Good Luck.


Forward Air email for claims

Let’s help bowler1 out here. It could happen to one of us too.

Let’s show then the power of



My involvement wit FA was a three boat deal. People received a canoe (damaged), shipped me a wooden kayak (damaged) and then I shipped a wooden kayak (OK). We used much of the same packing on all three boats with the difference being that I was advised to put “Fragile Kayak”, “No Forklifts” and “Top Load Only” labels all over it, that and a little kayak prayer at the terminal seemed to work for the one I shipped…

I think the one I shipped was the only one they would insure and only after I bitched about receiving a damaged boat.

I won’t do it again for a glass or wooden boat…

Exactly what do you expect us to do?
Do you honestly think a few emails from kayakers is going to make any difference. Best case, it will make US feel better.

Well, they finally returned my email the other day. I had sent about 3-4 emails and left about 3 voice messages.

The claims lady said that they were, “forwarding my claim to the appeals board”…this may be just a BS way of trying to quiet me down a bit and delay the action some more. I am expecting that the “appeals board” will probably deny my claim as well, but you never know. If their appeals board truly does what it is supposed to do then I should have a check coming to me.


good luck to you Matt…
keep your fingers crossed. Let’s hope that line doesn’t mean the same thing as when the car salesman says to you “I’ll go check with the sales manager” (which actually means "I’m going to go take a whiz, scratch my butt, work on my crossword puzzle, shoot the poop with the other salespeople, etc).