Air cargo handlers are responsible for loading, staging, securing, and unloading goods and baggage from planes. They must determine the aircraft’s centre of gravity and analyse the amount of cargo to accurately fulfil their jobs. Air cargo handlers operate a variety of equipment, including trucks, forklifts, conveyors, and luggage tugs, in all types of weather. Luggage, mail sacks, and animals are examples of loaded freight. According to AvJobs.com, airlines convey baggage of varied sizes, thus handlers must be able to move big goods weighing more than 50 pounds. These individuals should also anticipate to work on weekends and holidays.
- Check import and export documentation for incoming shipments and leaving cargo.
- Ascertain that the cargo is suitable for shipment and that it complies with all applicable regulations.
- When stacking, moving, and putting objects on pallets according to storage plans, keep in mind the height, weight, and specific handling requirements.
- Detect and report violations of safety and security regulations.
- Determine if there have been any violations of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) involving the transfer of hazardous materials or dangerous items.
- Interpret and adhere to safety and security regulations.
- Unit Load Devices must be assembled and disassembled (ULDs).
- Process shipments in line with weights and volumes that have been determined.
- Hazardous materials and items are screened out of shipping.
- Warehouses are used to store cargo in accordance with storage plans and freight requirements.
- Hazardous materials and items should be stored in the specified warehouses.
- Within the warehouses, goods is transferred and moved.
- Label containers with address labels, identification numbers, and shipment instructions.
- Coordination and supervision of workers involved in the packing and transportation of goods.
- When transporting grains, wheat, and milk, inspect vehicles and vans for cleanliness.
- To avoid shifting or damage during shipment, use straps, braces, and padding on the cargo.
- Keep a supply of packing supplies on hand.
- Obtain flight numbers, aeroplane numbers, and crew member names from dispatchers, and record information on plane flight papers.
- Using steel cutters, crowbars, or other hand tools, open shipping containers and unroll contents.
- Staplers, strapping machines, and hammers are used to pack products for shipping.
- Place ramps to allow planes to be loaded.
- Prepare manifests that show the weights of baggage, mail, and freight, as well as the number of passengers aboard planes, and send the information to destinations.
- Arrange for goods insurance coverage.
- After the plane has been loaded, remove the ramps and notify the pilots that all personnel and equipment have exited the plane.
- Loose materials should be shovelled into machine hoppers, vehicles, and containers.
- Using movable aircraft-air-conditioning-units, force conditioned air into plane interiors before to departure.
- Send product samples to quality control departments for inspection.
- Advise clients about modes of transportation and payment.
Requirements for Education and Training
A high school diploma is usually all that is required of cargo and freight agents. They frequently learn about their responsibilities on the job. Generally, entry-level cargo and freight agents begin by inspecting the products to be shipped. They make certain that deliveries are made on time and to the correct locations. Workers may require extensive training to operate the equipment utilised in these operations as these jobs become increasingly automated. Employers in the transportation and freight industries always favour people who are computer savvy. Filing, bookkeeping, and other clerical skills are also required of cargo and freight agents.
Obtaining the Position
Courier agencies and companies that ship a lot of materials from one area to another are in need of cargo and freight agents. Job postings can be found in the classified section of major daily newspapers. Job openings are frequently advertised in employment magazines and online job boards. Candidates can also apply for work as cargo and freight agents directly with transportation businesses.
Possibilities for Advancement and the Job Market
Advancement chances for cargo and freight agents are often limited. Some people, on the other hand, may ascend to supervisory roles as a result of their hard work and experience in the industry. Some agents may be able to use their abilities and hands-on experience to a variety of secretarial jobs that are linked to their area of expertise.
Jobs for cargo and freight agents are predicted to rise at a quicker rate than the rest of the economy. There will be an increasing demand for cargo and freight agencies as the demand for online shopping grows, resulting in an increase in cargo traffic. Job openings are also projected as a result of the requirement to replace vacancies left by other cargo and freight agents who have retired or left the industry.
Cargo and freight agents operate for a variety of companies in a variety of situations. They may work in non-temperature-controlled warehouses or stockrooms. Some of them may even be required to work in frigid storage rooms or on weather-exposed loading platforms.
Cargo and freight agents perform work that requires some physical activity. They frequently have to stand for lengthy periods of time and lift heavy objects. Despite the fact that automated gadgets lessen an agent’s burden, many employers do not have them. The work of cargo and freight agents is physically demanding.