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Cargo Insurance: What It Is and Why You Need It

Many shippers assume that their transported goods are covered by their freight forwarding company in case of accidents. They believe that as long their cargo is safely loaded into the aircraft or ship, they are already in safe hands. But for those who have learned their lesson the hard way, transporting your cargoes without insurance is a huge financial threat.

What Is Cargo Insurance

Legally, carriers should offer a minimum amount of insurance, which they call carrier liability. Therefore, you can somehow claim a certain percentage of your cargo’s worth from your freight forwarder in case of damage, loss or theft while your goods are in transit. Generally, the cargoes are insured while they are stored and while in transit until they reach the destination.

Unfortunately, not all realize the importance of insurance. This is, in fact, the most important part of freight forwarding and a critical element to have when you want to find an efficient supply carriage shipper that can ship your goods to and from Singapore. A reliable forwarding agent will include a cargo insurance to their package to give clients peace of mind while their cargo is in transit.

What Are the Limitations

As expected, insurances have limitation. For example, when your goods are shipped here in Singapore via truck, the carrier liability does not provide a protection against damages or losses caused by an independent motor carrier. That is why it helps a lot if your air freight, sea freight and local freight comes from a single freight forwarding company. It lets you get an insurance policy that can provide a broader coverage. However, commonly, there is not a single insurance policy you can buy and get 100 percent protection.

There are various types of insurance policies for cargo shipments, some are labeled as ‘broad form,’ ‘allrisks,’ and ‘legal liability.’ Regardless of the name, none of these policies provide total protection. These policies provide coverage in different ways, such as only these certain types of goods are covered, losses caused by some events are not included or a coverage only applied if the service is performed in a particular way.

In general, it is important for any shipper to record the value of their cargo in case of losses, damages or any disputes. It is also critical to seek legal help and work with an insurance company here in Singapore to fully understand your rights and level of protection.

Types of Cargo Insurance

Insurance policies for cargo shipping can be taken for local and international freight. However, it can be challenging to control and standardize any insurance policy without the cooperation of the countries due to the variations of the insurance, which can be categorized into the following classifications:

  1. Marine Cargo Insurance

This covers the transportation of goods via sea freight. To dispatch goods delivery by ships, whether for import to or export from Singapore, they are covered with insurance in case of damage due to loading and unloading of cargo, piracy, weather contingencies and other issues. Most of these policies cover international freight, but many sea cargo insurances provide them with specific terms and agreements, which vary from provider to provider.

  • Land Cargo Insurance

This insurance will protect your cargo from the damages incurred during the land transportation of goods. The insurance’s coverage aspects include collision damages, theft and other related risks. This insurance is a domestic type and, therefore, operates within the boundaries of Singapore. 

Why Do You Need It

Your freight forwarding services will have to ship your goods in land, sea and air. Have them insured to protect them against these favorable conditions:

  1. Damages Caused By Many Different Circumstances

The logistics for transportation of goods provides plenty of opportunities for your cargo to get damaged. Some of the common reasons for damage are:

  • Poor packaging
  • Wrong choice of container
  • Poor distribution of cargo weight
  • Condensation
  • Overloading
  • Lack of carriage instruction
  • Wrong temperature
  • Stack weight exceeded
  • Contaminated floors

There are actually more things that can possibly go wrong and damage your goods. These are just a few to help you see why you need to get your cargo insured.

  • Limited Coverage of Carrier Liability

Your freight forwarder only covers so much. Although Freight Master is a trusted name in Singapore for logistics services, it is still imperative to get your grounds covered in case of unforeseen circumstances. Since carrier liability is very limited, you want something that will reimburse the most value of your goods in the event of damage, loss or theft.

  • Cargo Theft

Cargo theft, especially in the form of unauthorized pickup, is surprisingly common in this industry. A shipping company cannot monitor every single person who picks up a cargo, so you would want to do your part to help secure your goods and ensure they arrive to the recipient safely.

  • General Average

General Average is an accepted international regulation where in if certain types of accidents happen to the cargo vessel of your logistics company, all entities share in the loss equally. Even if your cargo is safe and undamaged, you will be required to pay a deposit or a bond for the release of your cargo. By getting an insurance, your insurance company will take care of this responsibility and ensures the safe release of your cargo during a General Average situation.

Should I Request for a Cargo Insurance

Now that we have tackled what cargo insurance is, what it covers and why you should get it, hopefully, you have realized the monetary security it can offer to you. If not, think of the possible risks you may encounter in the shipping of your cargo via air freight, sea freight and local freight. What could possibly happen to your business if the entire vessel of your shipping company faced a tragic accident that resulted to the loss of cargoes?

Accidents happen; so, it would be best to ask your logistics company if they offer additional coverage for their insurance. If not, look for an insurance company that can offer you the best possible coverage.

What You Need to Know About Aircon Installation

Determining which type of air conditioning system is best for your home or office is crucial if you want to save money on electric bills. Some systems are also compatible with specific setups, but the more complicated air conditioning options for commercial and industrial buildings will need the expertise of the best aircon servicing company in Singapore. Proper installation is the key to maintaining a fully-functioning air conditioning system that is not prone to a lot of problems.

Types of Air Conditioning Systems
• Window – As the name implies, a window-type air conditioner is installed in a window of a room to cool a small space. Your aircon technician in Singapore will recommend this type of aircon if you only need to cool one small room. It is designed to emit warm air at the back and blow cool air into the room.

• Split – Also called mini-split or ductless, this type or air conditioner is ideal for homes with four or less rooms that need cooling. It’s like a mini version of central air conditioning but the systems are interconnected to one outdoor unit and you can adjust the temperature in each individual room. The aircon servicing company will also recommend this type of system to small offices with less than five rooms.

• Packaged – The aircon servicing company will recommend this if you need to cool two large rooms in your office. This can be done in the following ways: the condenser and compressor are placed in one casing but the cooling coil and the expansion valves are placed in different locations; or the compressor, expansion valve, condenser, and evaporator are all placed in one box while the cool air passes through the ducts found in several rooms.

• Centralized – Central air conditioning is ideal for large homes and offices because it cools several rooms efficiently through its supply ducts on the walls and floors. It has a huge compressor capable of producing a hundred tons of cool air. Installation of this type of air conditioning system is complicated and it needs regular aircon maintenance as well. The supply and return ducts must be regularly inspected and the aircon repair will cost more than in other air conditioning systems.

• Portable – This is a smaller, lighter version of the window air conditioner. They are also easy to install, affordable, and are designed to cool only one room, such as a small apartment. Your aircon technician in Singapore will recommend this if you need an affordable option. The unit works by taking the air inside the room, cooling it, and blowing it back to the room.

• Hybrid – You can find this type of air conditioner in most cars, because it uses energy from both fossil fuels and electricity to cool the air. This might also be useful in large industrial facilities that use heavy equipment. Aircon repair is more complicated than the other types of aircon, that is why regular aircon maintenance is a must.

Proper Installation of Residential Aircons
If you have just moved in to a new apartment in Singapore, call the nearest aircon servicing shop to perform an inspection and maintain cooling ventilation system in your Singapore residence. If the system is not centralized, then you need to determine if the existing ventilation system in building will meet your needs. For small apartments with less than five rooms, you can save more money with a window, portable or split aircon.

Look for energy-efficient models that are easy to install and maintain. The aircon maintenance crew can tell you if the type of aircon you have in mind will be enough for the size of the area. Besides the area, the aircon technician will also consider the condition of the area where the exterior parts of the aircon will be installed, the direction of the sunlight if it is a window aircon, the noise produced by the unit, and the space for the refrigeration line if it is a split aircon.

A ductless aircon is slightly more complicated to install than the portable and window aircons, because it needs specific measurements and sizing. Only a reputable aircon servicing company in Singapore should install this to avoid problems in the future.

To avoid issues, you must schedule a regular maintenance with the same aircon servicing company that installed the system.

Proper Installation of Commercial/Industrial Aircon Systems
Offices must consider the following factors when choosing an air conditioning system: budget, area or spaces that need air conditioning, the condition of the walls and ceiling, energy-efficiency, the condition of the area where the exterior units will be placed, and the heat generated by the system.

A packaged air conditioner for example has two units, one for the evaporative process and another for the cooling process. This type of aircon must be installed in an external wall and connected to the other components of a HVAC or heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems found in most buildings.

The central air conditioning system is the most popular choice in most buildings, however, because it is energy-efficient and does not produce a lot of noise. For this type of aircon, it needs two distinct units that are connected by the refrigerant tubing. Extensive planning and layout is required before this system is installed. To best determine the correct size for the central air conditioning, consult a licensed aircon technician who will survey the space. Remember that for the system to work, it must always have two components, the evaporating unit and the condensing unit.

Regular aircon maintenance is also crucial for central air conditioning because the ducts must be cleaned and inspected, the filters replaced, and the thermostat calibrated.

4 Critical Things to Consider Before Hiring a Private Investigator

Private investigators are hired for many different reasons, including security purposes, surveillance works, to find missing witnesses and persons, background checking, accident reconstructions and even to catch cheating spouse. The investigator you hire plays a significant role for the success of the investigation.

For instance, if the investigation is done for a criminal case, a good private investigator can potentially turn the tables. So, what can you do to ensure that the PI you hired is going to be worth it? Here are the key considerations to keep in mind when looking for a private investigator.

License
Here in Singapore, it is mandatory for legal private investigators to get a license. To be able to secure one, investigators need to undergo training, have considerable experience and has to undergo thorough background check. Therefore, a licensed PI is likely to have better skills and more experience, and has better understanding of the ethical matters involved in the compliance of the duty.

Upon meeting, ask the investigator to provide his license number, and then have it verified in the licensing agency to check whether the investigator is a licensed PI in Singapore.

Credentials
While investigators offer a wide range of private investigator services, most of them specialize in specific investigative fields. Some PIs have undergone formal training. Some might have work experience that lead to certain investigative jobs, such as being once an arson investigator, a police officer or an insurance investigator. The more experience and training an investigator have undergone that is relevant to his work, the more likely the expert is going to perform private investigator services competently.

In addition, a trained private investigator in Singapore is less likely to commit mistakes that can hamper the progress of the case, such as violating client confidentiality or taking investigative works that causes conflict of interest. A well-experienced expert within a particular field is also able to utilize resources and knowledge that may not be known to less qualified PIs.

Interview
Before finally hiring a potential investigator, make sure to interview them. After all, you would not expect getting a job without an interview, and this is not an exemption. Here are a few of the most important questions to include in an interview.

• What is your background of this job?
Asking this question will give you a general idea of their expertise. Are they retired police officer? Have worked in FBI? Other than knowing their work history, it helps you find out that they are retired officers, not fired officers. Termination from being a law enforcer could be due to poor performance or as serious as unethical or illegal practices—the information you must know before employing private investigator services.

• Who will be assigned for my case?
In order for an investigative firm to provide excellent quality service, they assign a team of investigators, each with different skills, backgrounds and experience in order to handle a case the best way possible. For such reason, find out the capabilities of every individual in the team and determine their strengths that can help in the successful investigation of your case. However, do not get offended if your case is not handled by the head investigator. Different experts in the organizations have specific sets of skills and contact that can help for the accurate and fast resolution of your case. Trust the experts assigned to you; they are the ones assigned to handle your case for a good reason.

• How long have you been a private investigator?
Like any other profession, before becoming a pro in your field, we have to start somewhere. But having less experience does not mean they are bad. Understand that employing a newer investigator is not a bad thing. However, it is also important to keep in mind that for more delicate matters, like custody cases and professional surveillance, experience is key. Moreover, investigators with excellent success records and practice ethical behaviour are more likely to provide you with great results. Just know, though, that hiring a respectable, qualified and newly licensed PI in Singapore is not bad thing either.

Private Investigator Fees
The fee that your investigator will charge will depend on the nature of the work for which the expert is hired. Some investigative works can be conducted on a fixed rate, such as basic background check or search of digital records for a missing individual. For more thorough investigative works, you are likelt to be charged with a higher rate.

Some investigator services are essentially costly, such as surveillance of a particular individual. As a rule of thumb, the more time an investigator commits to an investigation, the more the service will cost.

Another factor that can affect the pricing of a service is the extent of the expert’s experience, the complexity of the operations and the timeframe you demand. But always keep in mind that whatever arrangement you negotiate regarding the payment, have it stated in the contract. Include in the written agreement when the payment should be given and additional services and tasks included in the fee.

Private investigators are hired by people to find out the truth regardless of what you feel, expect or think about something. If you hire a PI to catch cheating spouse, but turns out after the investigation that they were not, then that is the truth. What you expect as a result of your case is not always what you are going to get after a thorough investigation. A private investigator cannot guarantee to give you the results you want. They can only assure that they will do their job well and provide you nothing but the truth. The outcome of the case? That’s another story.