Density is very important in selecting freight class. One carrier that rates solely on density of an item is Central Transport. Some carriers will rate based on density if the commodities’ National Motor Freight Classification (NMFC) is a density based item. Three carriers that do this are Midwest Motor Express, UPS, and Saia.

With these NMFC density based rating carriers the general rule is anything under 48 inches high will be calculated as 48 inches and anything over 48 inches but under 96 inches will be calculated as 96 inches for density purposes.

Please see the actual wording from one of the carrier’s rules tariff below:

So how could this affect your shipment?

Say you were shipping 1 pallet of sheet steel, or NMFC 175120, which is a density based item.
• The dimensions are 144” L x 45” W x 18” H
• The total weight is 550lbs.
• This equates to 8.1 PCF & Class 100
o In turn, sub 6 would be selected for this NMFC (175120-6)

However, if you change the dimensions based on the carrier’s rules tariff above, you now have the following:
• The dimensions are 144” L x 45” W x 48”


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