Glossary

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There are currently 10 names in this directory beginning with the letter B.
Boxcar
An enclosed railcar, typically forty to fifty feet long, used for packaged freight and some bulk commodities.

Broker
An agent who arranges interstate movements of goods through other carriers.

Bobtail
Motor Carrier slang indicating a non-revenue movement without a trailer or container attached.

Back Haul
The return move of a car or container towards the point where the initial load originated or to handle a shipment in the direction of the light flow of traffic.

Breakbulk
The process of separating a load into individual shipments, then routing to various destinations.

BCO (Beneficial Cargo Owner)
The actual owner of the lading that is being shipped. The IMC negotiates transportation services and rates on behalf of the beneficial owner.

Bill of Lading

A shipping form which is both a receipt for property and a contract for delivery of goods by a carrier. The principal bills of lading are:

  • Clean — Either a straight or order bill of lading issued by a carrier declaring that the freight has been received in an appropriate condition, without the presence of defects or shortage.
  • Exchange — A bill of lading issued by the carrier or agent that is substituted for the original bill of lading, where the middleman is shown as the shipper and protects the identity of the original freight supplier.
  • Export — A bill of lading that is issued to cover a shipment consigned to a foreign country.
  • Order — A negotiable document that is issued to the order of a shipper or consignee for the delivery of the freight and can be transferred by endorsement to third parties in accordance with its terms. Straight — A non-negotiable document that is issued to a specified consignee for the delivery of the freight and that cannot be endorsed by another party. Surrender of the original bill is not required upon delivery of the freight unless necessary to identify consignee.

Blocking or Bracing
Wood, metal or other approved supports to keep shipments in place in or on rail cars, containers and trailers. This is not as onerous as one would expect. Railroads help shippers configure load plans.

Booking/Reservation Number
A three-part series of characters given out by REZ-1 to an IMC who, in turn, will give it to a drayage provider so that they can use it as a ramp to pick up an empty unit for loading and shipment.

Bundled Product/Rate
A term used to describe an intermodal product for which an allotment of "free days" or relief of per diem is built into the line haul rate. SPDU containers are marketed as a bundled product.