Shipping Container Delivery Guide

Understanding the shipping container delivery guide is crucial when preparing for your container delivery. You need to spend some time reviewing the suitability of your intended drop site. Let’s discuss some of the  guidelines you must follow to ensure a successful delivery.

Preparation and Access

Kindly coordinate with our operations team to ensure there is ample space for the tilt bed truck to safely maneuver and unload the container. It’s important to note that delivery trucks are specifically designed for use on dry, well-compacted surfaces such as asphalt or concrete. These trucks are not equipped with 4×4 capabilities, which means they can easily lose traction and get stuck when driven off sealed roads. While compacted dirt and gravel surfaces are generally acceptable, it is crucial that the surface is dry. Unsuitable ground conditions include loose dirt, wet and muddy areas, sandy terrain, soft grass, icy or snowy conditions, steep inclines or declines, sloping surfaces, drains, ditches, and trenches.

40ft Container ground delivery by Skymax Containers

Clearance and Overhead Obstructions

Typically, a minimum vertical clearance of 14 feet is necessary when transporting a container. However, when it comes to unloading the container, a clearance of up to 20 feet is required to allow the tilt bed to be raised and the container to slide off the trailer. It is crucial to avoid any potential damage to the tractor or trailer caused by low-hanging tree branches, gates, ditches, or other obstacles. Therefore, it is important to ensure there is ample clearance and no obstructions in the path.
40ft shipping container delivery ready to be delivered

Having enough straight line clearance 

40FT & 45FT Containers:
Adequate space to maneuver a 75’ long tractor trailer is needed at the delivery location. Heavy trucks need more turning radius than normal vehicles. There must be at least 100 feet in a straight line at the intended drop site, so that the container can be unloaded and the truck can drive forward unobstructed.

20FT & Smaller Containers:
Less space is required to maneuver a truck delivering a 20FT container, but there must be at least 60 feet in a straight line at the intended drop site. The same height, width, & visibility restrictions from above apply.

Shipping container lifted on railroad ties prevent rust and condensation

Preparing your drop site

The drop site where your container will sit should be level and the ground where the truck will park while unloading the container also needs to be level. Your chosen drop site should not require the tractor or trailer to move up or down any terrain that is unpaved or sloping in order to complete a delivery. When placing the container onto the ground the weight of the container needs to be distributed to the four corner castings. Concrete and asphalt surfaces are excellent choices. Alternatively, stone pavers, hard blocks of wood, railroad ties or gravel can be placed in the corners to keep the container level and the weight evenly distributed. If the container is not level, the doors will bind (pinch) making them hard to operate.

Container loaded Skymax Container depot

Inclement weather (heavy rain, snowfall, etc)

Please remember that we are not at your location, so you are our only eyes and ears. If the weather is bad, you must let us know so we can reschedule. For unsealed (not concrete/asphalt) delivery roads/paths/sites: when bad weather is forecast for the day of your delivery, or the ground is wet from previous precipitation it’s imperative that you contact us to have your delivery rescheduled.