March 20, 2012

Peak PCS season is here again

Written by: Staff
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Summer Permanent Change of Station moves within the continental United States are in full swing.

Much like last season, the entire Defense Department is experiencing difficulty obtaining Transportation Service Providers to pack and pick up personal property shipments.

DOD attributes this to several factors to include limited carrier capacity, an increase in private sector moves, an overall commercial driver shortage and the normal large volume of requests for property movement from May 1 to July 31.

To offset the impact to families, the Transportation Personal Property Shipping Offices are using all available tools and options to manage shipment volume and move property in accordance with customers’ requested pickup dates. To that end, they are working closely with the Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command and commercial industry to identify carriers who are able to service shipments. The Personal Property Shipping offices are also placing some shipments into temporary storage at origin locations. Furthermore, the military services have been working with industry to add flexibility to business rules with a goal of securing maximum carrier capacity.

Because there are so many competing pressures for personal property movement this summer, it is important to focus on a few things Airman and civilians can do to offset the impact. First, one thing “you can do” is review your schedule and work with the assignments team to determine if you can postpone your move; change your report-no-later-than-date until after the summer season when carriers are better able to pack and pick up your property.

Flexibility affords the Personal Property Shipping Offices an expanded opportunity to move personal property.

Another very important thing “you can do” is elect the option to perform a Personally Procured Move (formerly DITY). This option allows you to control move dates and ensures they have ready access to their property upon arrival at the new location. There are several PPM options including one that reimburses up to what the government would have paid for the move and another where you could receive a financial incentive if your move costs less than 95 percent of the government’s constructed cost. Factors such as weight limit, actual weight of property moved and distance between origin and destination determine the amount of money involved. In addition to the old “rent a truck” PPM option, you now have access to new modes within the commercial industry called Portable Moving and Storage Containers. These come in the form of containers dropped at your door that YOU pack and the company picks up, transports, stores and then delivers at your destination at your request. Some companies also offer a menu of associated services including full or partial packing. If you want to discuss the benefits of PPMs, your local Personal Property Processing Office (formerly TMO) can provide an estimate of the cost factors, describe the particulars of the programs and help determine if this option will work for you.

Remember to contact the Traffic Management Office as soon as you have PCS orders in-hand. Below are useful pamphlets you should review prior to attending your initial counseling session with your Transportation Office.

The “It’s Your Move Pamphlet” can be found at:

For military: www.transcom.mil/j5/pt/dtrpart4/dtr_part_iv_app_k_1.pdf

For civilians: www.transcom.mil/j5/pt/dtrpart4/dtr_part_iv_app_k_2.pdf

The Shipping and Storing Your Privately Owned Vehicle Pamphlets can be found at: http://wddcbiz.sddc.army.mil/public/personal%20property/vehiclespov

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