Hurricane Ian is likely to sweep across the west coast of Florida soon, causing a risk of destruction, displacements and power outages. Florida and surrounding states are now bracing for this coming hurricane, and many also anticipate flash flooding and ongoing storms after Ian hits land.
All of this could have a serious impact on the automotive supply chain and various players in the industry – regardless of whether those players are looking to buy or sell vehicles, rent out cars, transport vehicle inventory or use fleet units to conduct another form of business. Additionally, storm-related challenges could add even more supply chain disruptions to an already burdened auto industry grappling with high fuel prices, strained carrier capacity, a tight labor market and a widespread semiconductor chip shortage.
ACERTUS’ teams take these severe-weather challenges seriously. These teams are closely monitoring the situation on the ground, providing regular updates to our carriers, drivers and customers and working to provide around-the-clock service to all involved. There are a few key areas where ACERTUS has identified likely coming challenges that will impact automotive players as a result of these storms, but there are also ways in which ACERTUS can step in as an expert logistics provider to help.
The Need to Reposition Inventory
Perhaps one of the most crucial disruptions that will face automotive players impacted by Hurricane Ian and related storms will be the need to reposition inventory, moving it out of harm’s way and into safety. To prevent damage, many retailers and rental car companies are looking to transport their vehicle inventory off their lots and into locations with more coverage from the storm’s coming impacts.
Fleet-management companies, automakers and other companies with fleets are also looking to move many of their units offsite and into more secure locations, away from the areas that will likely be the hardest hit.
Once storms and precarious weather conditions have moved on, logistics providers can then help companies – vehicle retailers in particular – replace their inventory and restock their lots again.
Preparation for Flash Flooding and Future Storms
Beyond just reaching to what will soon happen on the ground in areas along the west coast of Florida, companies must also prepare for subsequent flash flooding that will likely occur as a result of these storms, as well as for any future hurricanes, tropical storms or severe weather that might take place.
Many times, companies that have most of their vehicle inventory in low areas have to start moving their vehicles to higher ground for risk mitigation, working to avoid any damages that could come from flash floods. Many businesses will want extra protection for their vehicles, looking to transport inventory into more secure storage sites where vehicles can be monitored and held in insurance-covered facilities until they’re ready to retrieve them.
Anticipation of Fuel Increases
Because so many refineries are located in the southern United States, particularly along coastal areas, many in the automotive industry are anticipating further strains to the fuel supply chain and possibly even higher fuel prices than what exist currently. If these fuel-price increases occur, these won’t just hit the storm-impacted states, however; these price hikes will impact the entire country.
Companies that regularly transport vehicles will want to take rising fuel costs into consideration as they make plans for the near future and account for various expenses impacting their respective businesses.
In some cases, dealerships, rental companies and other companies may decide there is more value and overall cost savings in outsourcing services like car haul or drive away to a logistics provider, then taking on all those costs and resource-intensive operations themselves.
ACERTUS’ SMART Plan
ACERTUS employs a Storm Management and Response Tactics (SMART) Plan to help companies and protect their assets during times when they face hurricanes and extreme storm impacts.
Namely, through this SMART Plan program, companies that partner with ACERTUS on vehicle transport, storage or other logistics services gain access to real-time storm monitoring and tracking, in-transit vehicle re-routing, a regularly updated list of any vehicles that could potentially be in the path of impending storms, around-the-clock access to SMART Plan personnel, driver and resource staging at safe-haven locations and even relocations and bunkering of vehicles as needed, so they’re moved out of a storm’s path and into hardened facilities.
The goal of ACERTUS’ SMART Plan and its many features is to help companies reduce their risk of storm damage, increase control of vehicle inventory, allow for a quick response to recovery of storm damage and provide companies with access to online Condition Reporting, digital photos and regular vehicle updates.
Ultimately, ACERTUS is a full-range vehicle-logistics company that can assist companies with not just vehicle transports, but also services like storage options, reconditioning, care and maintenance and more – all to help these automotive players navigate hurricane and severe-storm weather, keep their inventory protected and ensure they can continue to conduct business and meet their own customers’ needs.
Learn more about ACERTUS’ car haul services, as well as its full range of transport and automotive-logistics solutions, at https://acertusdelivers.com. To connect with one of our team members or receive a pricing quote, contact us here or call us at: 855-ACERTUS (855-223-7887).