Cargo Securement

Cargo Securement

Proper cargo securement is important for many reasons. A load that is properly secured is protected from damage to the cargo, and ensures the safety of the driver hauling the load and the safety those traveling around him or her. Loose cargo is dangerous and that danger multiplies if the cargo comes completely off the truck or trailer while it is being transported.

  1. Weight of the cargo should be properly distributed
  2. Cargo should be properly secured which means it can’t shift, tip or fall
  3. Stop as soon as you can safely do so after leaving the right-of-way and check load securement again
  4. Inspect your load and securement again after the first 50 miles of travel and every time you stop
  5. Use one strap if the length of your article is less than 5 ft and under 1100 pounds, 2 if it is over 5 ft but less than 10 ft and then one additional tie-down for every 10 ft of cargo length (if in doubt add an extra strap or even 2)
  6. Use blocking, bracing, dunnage and tie-downs as necessary and as required by regulation to keep load from shifting
  7. Know your WLL (working load limit)
  8. WLL determines how much weight or force a securement device can secure without breaking and is usually assigned by the manufacturer and stamped on the securement device
  9. The aggregate WLL must be 50% of the total weight of the cargo
  10. All vehicles must stay within the legal weight limits of the city, state or municipality they are traveling through
  11. Your load shouldn’t exceed the weight limits of your tow vehicle
  12. Your load shouldn’t exceed the maximum weight recommendations of the tire manufacturer (stamped on tire)
  13. Overloading or improper loading can adversely affect steering, braking and speed control
  14. The heaviest cargo should be on the bottom so the load is not top heavy – a top heavy load can cause a roll-over
  15. Regardless of how much help a driver gets loading the cargo and securing it, the driver is ultimately responsible for the load and its proper securement
  16. Anything loose in the bed of a pick-up truck is considered unsecured cargo – keep it clean, organized and free from trash and loose tools
  17. Clumps of mud or dirt on a flat bed trailer are also considered unsecured cargo – carry a broom to keep your flat bed clean and free of debris
  18. A secure load is a safe load