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Transportation is a barometer of the

economic,social and commercial
progress of the country.
It is a most visible element of the
Logistics Management.
Transportation is the dynamic part of the
supply chain management. A good
transportation system is one of the
pillars of the growth of trade and
In the olden days modes of transportation
were ,
• Human beings.
• Camels.
• Horses.
• Bullocks – bullock-carts.
• Ships.
• Elephants to carry wooden logs
As the evolution took place, in modern
• Roads.
• Rails.
• Water – ships.
• Aircrafts.
• Pipelines.
• Ropeways. [ Rare cases ]
are the main modes of transportations.
Transportation serves two purposes,
1. Material / Product movement from one
place to another.
2. In – Transit product storage.

The guiding principle for choosing the

mode of transportation is –
Least cost per unit weight / volume of the
product moved over unit distance.
In India Cargo movement – mode of transportation
used comparative data.[ 2003 ]

Mode of Transport Cargo Handled in

Million Tonnes.
Road 580

Rail 510

Sea 287

Air 0.90

Pipeline 30.5
Road transportation :

This mode of transportation is very useful

incase of accessibility at remote places.
As on today this mode of transportation
occupies predominant position in
transportation network.
Length of National Highways : 34,850 Kms.
Length of State Highways : 1,37,120 Kms.
Major advantages of road transportation are,
1. Door to door service.
2. Flexibility.
3. Reliability.
4. Reach to remote places.
5. Speed.
In India, at present 25 million trucks are running
on the road.Average coverage per day is
250 ~ 300 Kms / day as against 550 ~ 600 Kms
/ day in developed countries.This is mainly
because of poor road conditions in India.
Railways :
This mode of transportation is used to
carry material as well as people. It is the
cheapest mode of transportation
available in our country.
42% of the transportation is occupied by
transportation of Coal in India. Other
contributors are cement, fertilizers, food
grains, steel, Iron ore etc.
Sea :
• It is the cheapest mode of transportation
in International business.
• Heavy machinery and large quantities of
material and products or goods can be
transported through this mode.
• One should have a Seaport nearby for
faster communication.
• Legal formalities are complicated.
• Lot of documentation and paper work is
• Negotiation skills to tackle Government
authorities is required.
Major imports are,
1. Petroleum oil % lubricants
2. Liquid natural gas. 36%
3. Liquid petroleum gas .
4. Coal 17%
5. Iron ore 16%
6. Fertilizers 5%
Air :
This mode of transportation is costliest of
all. It is mainly used for perishable
commodities and for the items whose
life is short and value is very high.
Industries use this mode of transportation
only in case of emergency.
Pipelines :
This mode of transportation was first developed
by Mr.Samuel in 1870 to transport petroleum
in Pennsylvania.
• Initial investment is very high.
• It works 24 hours.
• It is free of cost once installed.[ negligible ]
• Widely used by corporations for
transportation of water, drainage etc.
• It is Eco friendly.
• At present 27% of the petroleum
products are moved through Pipelines
over a distance of 6350 Kms.
Ropeways :
This is used in hilly areas .In India 16% of the
geographical area is covered by hilly regions.
1. They cause least damage to ecology.
2. Inaccessible hilly areas can be reached through
this shortest routes.
3. In these zones other modes of transportations
are uneconomical.
4. Bulk material can be moved faster over short
5. This is mainly used in Assam, Sikkim,
Meghalaya, Mizoram, Himachal Pradesh.
Freight Management :
The selection of mode of Transportation
depends upon the product characteristics.
• Speed.
• Investments.
• Freight cost.
• Reliability.
• Frequency.
• capability
Charact Road Rail Water Air Pipeline

Speed 2 3 4 1 5

Invest. 1 2 3 4 5

Cost 4 3 1 5 2

Reliabilit 2 3 4 5 1
Freq. 2 3 4 5 1

Capabilit 4 3 2 5 1
Speed : the speed of the service is
important.It is the time elapsed from
moving from source to destiny.
Reliability : This means the ability of the
carrier to deliver the shipment in good
condition, within the stipulated delivery
time span to the customer.
Frequency : it is the number of
scheduled movement of the carrier
between a pair of locations.
Transportation Networks :
1. Point to Point :

of Destiny
Multiple Delivery Patterns :
Delivery Point 1

Delivery Point 2

Trans shipment points :

Trans shipment points

Origin Destiny

Long Distance Local Transport

Nodal Network :

terminal Port terminal
Pickup & distribution

Multiple Road Rail

Pickup & distribution terminal terminal

Road Air
Multiple terminal terminal
Pickup & distribution
Hub and Spoke Network:




DC*-distribution center
Containerization :
A container can be defined as a transport
device to move solid or liquid material.
Mr. Malcom McClean introduced the idea
in 1956. In shipping business it got
introduced in 1960.
Now all over the world this concept is
accepted and used.
• Integration of various modes of
transportation / emergence of inter –
modal transportation.
• Elimination of cargo trans shipment.
• Speedier delivery service.
• Door to door service to customer.
• Risk of transit damage and pilferage
reduced drastically.
• Substantial reduction in packing cost.
• Reduction in distribution cost.