With the traditional peak season of permanent change of station military moves fast approaching, officials at Fort Knox Transportation are getting the word out now about how to make the move smooth.

Transportation Traffic Manager Bobby Hardaway said his office is working to reach out to military personnel now, asking them to start planning. The reason for this: because too many Soldiers have created extra stress by not understanding how to negotiate Transportation prior to, during and after a move.

"Information is being lost in translation," said Hardaway. "We want everyone to be informed in this process."

Some of the information Transportation officials provide comes in the form of an FAQ, or Frequently Asked Questions -- a list of hot topics that is provided to personnel as they come in for briefings. Key questions include "I'm PCSing and I have my orders; what do I do?" and "What are blackout dates?"

According to Hardaway, one of the first mistakes Soldiers make is assuming they have to wait for an approved leave form before they can contact Transportation.

"That's just not true," said Hardaway. "As soon as they receive orders, they need to contact Transportation and start making arrangements to have their property packed and picked up."

Last year, U.S. Transportation Command approved of new regulations that dropped traditional mandatory counseling sessions for some authorized personnel in favor of self-counseling. The sessions, done through a web-based system called Defense Personal Property System, or DPS, puts the onus of counseling on personnel preparing to move rather than Transportation officials. It's not authorized for everyone, however.

Enlisted and commissioned Soldiers moving for the first time and retirees are not authorized to utilize the service. According to Transportation officials, the reasons are different but just as important.

For first-time movers, it is important for Transportation counselors to ensure they understand how a military move works. It also serves to ensure that unit representatives know better how to take care of their newest members.

For retirees, there are several circumstances unique to their final move that counselors need to make them aware of.

Officials said that while self-counseling is authorized for seasoned travelers, it is not recommended.
Another area of regular confusion for moving personnel is understanding what the "required delivery date," or RDD, is. Many mistakenly assume this date refers to when they can expect their household goods to arrive, according to Hardaway, who said that is not the purpose of the RDD.

Because of confusion, the FAQ features this question and answer.

"The RDD is the no-later-than date which the local moving company has to receive your property, and subsequently contact you by email or phone that they are in possession of your shipment," states the FAQ. "You will then need to contact them to schedule a delivery date."

Hardaway asked those who expect to move anytime this year know who to call, and when. For instance, if there are problems with a moving company, personnel should call a government Quality Control (QC) inspector at (502) 624-4192 or 3857.

For more general information about moving, visit the official Department of Defense moving portal (see below) or the Transportation Division website (also below), call the Outbound Transportation Office at (502) 624-2037, or stop by the offices at White Hall Bldg. 1384 on the 2nd floor. They are open 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday thru Friday.