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UPS and ski damage

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
UPS mangled one of a pair of new unmounted skis that I sold and shipped. Literally hit the box so hard they delaminated the ski at midpoint. Unclear if they will compensate me, however, even though I bought insurance, because they claim the insurance covers "loss," not damage, when the shipper packs the skis. They were inappropriately packaged, UPS claims.

Uh huh. I wrapped them tightly in three layers of bubble wrap, then in a fitted box used by a respected e-retailer to ship me the same pair of skis. (Via UPS.) Who themselves just use styrofoam peanuts; something I've never seen in any box I've received from a ski dealer.

So any advice on how to proceed? I'm contemplating small claims court, which may or may not have jurisdiction, and I've filed an appeal with UPS. Any other ideas on how to get these guys to do the right thing?
post #2 of 15
That's tough. Guess we avoid UPS. I have had skis shipped in just a simple box taped together with no other padding and had no problem. That's abusive to have a ski busted when its packaged like you did. I think your burden of proof is to demonstrate that you exercised at least the minimum standard of care used by UPS and the ski trade in shipping. Insurance surely covers damage and loss. Get a copy of the policy and read it. The damage procedure is at this link.
post #3 of 15
Boy I had no idea they would not cover damage. I have no good suggestions for how to get them to compensate but I DO have a packaging technique that is pretty bombproof for future shipments. Get a "sono" tube (heavy cardboard construction form they use to pour cement into for footings and pilings - they come in different diameters) Bubble wrap and slide the skis in. Then you need to cut two pieces of cardboard to make the ends, then tape like mad. I have shipped many long objects in these things without damage, despite signs of heavy or misshandling.
post #4 of 15
Interesting, I just had 2 pairs of skis shipped to me with no more padding than some wadded-up newspaper, without issue. Sorry for your loss, pursue that insurance
post #5 of 15
On the few occassions that I've felt the need to contact a large corp. over service issues,I've usually aimed for the top.A nicely worded letter to the CEO can often have quick,amazing results.
post #6 of 15
cspsskiguy -- Speaks the truth

I always write the CEO when a customer service "meltdown" occurs and is not resolved at a lower level

post #7 of 15
The letter to the CEO has always worked for me as well.

Now about that box. Are they trying to tell you that perhaps the skis were shipped in a damaged condition and they have no way of telling whether it was done in transit? If the skis were damaged as you describe I assume that the box was damaged as well. UPS does not accept damaged boxes for shipment. Therefore it must have been damaged during shipment.
post #8 of 15
If there was no damage to the outside of the box (usually at least a crease or mark of some type) then the key is hidden damage. I would pursue this further and see if there is some sort of appeal or excalation.

As for things to use for packaging the skis in. The only pair of skis I shipped I used the round carpet tubes that the big carpet roles come on. It added quite a bit to the weight of the shipment but was free from the buddy of mine's carpet store.
post #9 of 15

Like CR above, I have received skis that were just taped together and in a thin, long box. They came out okay (i.e. no broken edges, cracked topsheets or other visible damage).

I am always leery though. I mean I've watched the baggage guys at the airport many a time just tossing skis into the cargo hold (which is why I bought one of those hard plastic Sportubes).

Hope you get the sitch resolved with as little hassle as possible.
post #10 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the ideas, guys. I'll compose a letter to the CEO and think hard about tubes. Kinda down cuz I just read about Noodler.
post #11 of 15
Did you sent the skis from a UPS facility or a USP Store (which used to be Mailboxes Etc Stores?) If it was from one of their contract locations (USP Store) you may find that UPS trys to limit their liability to $100 and that any recourse they will tell you is against the contract store you delt with. They accept money for "insurance" but later claim it is not "insurance." Check your receipt carefully so that you can anticpate their position. They quicky seemed to end their marketing campaign for "brown" possibly because they treat their customers like .... Good Luck
post #12 of 15
When I used to collect, repair and sell vintage musical equipment, I've had more than one occasion where UPS has delivered the goods damaged/destroyed...Despite getting insurance on all, I've never had a succesful claim result.

I had one instance where I shipped a vintage keyboard/synth in a hardcase made for tour use and inside an oversize box w/foam and airbags. The synth arrived totally destroyed and UPS claimed no fault due to "improper" packaging.
The funny thing was that the box, w/synth still inside, was completely crushed to a pancake in the very center w/truck tire marks on it.

That one cost me $1500...
post #13 of 15
Check out their packing guidelines if you think you met them (sounds like you did) say so.

Then again,

Good luck,
post #14 of 15
A call to your local attorney general's office may help. UPS ALWAYS claims that the merch was incorrectly packed. I consider what they do insurance fraud.
post #15 of 15
I'm working for UPS right now as a loader. Most damage comes from either jamming or from heavy packages sliding down chutes (at high speeds). From their perspective, I don't think there is a good way to avoid damages, short of improvements in the feeder designs ($$$), which would fix these problems. However, I do think they should be more responsible regarding compensation.

Three layers of bubble wrap, especially in a fitted box, should be enough to reasonably protect a pair of skis. I will do the same plus an extra box with foam peanuts for my future shipments (regardless of the company).

I'm actually surprised at what they will allow sometimes as far as packaging. Heavy automotive parts are the worst, for some reason these are frequently packed in boxes that are just falling apart.
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