The correct loading of heavy vehicles is vital in the prevention of injury to drivers and members of the public and the prevention of damage to materials and equipment.
Vehicle loads must be sufficiently restrained to prevent movement from the forces arising from the vehicle passing over road undulations, changing direction or when it is being braked or accelerated. It requires much more force to stop a load that has started moving than it does to prevent the movement in the first place. It is essential that the load is restrained to prevent movement in any direction relative to the vehicle. Friction between the load and the vehicle platform cannot be relied on to make a load secure. Dynamic forces will tend to exceed such frictional forces and render a load insecure. It is therefore necessary to provide additional restraint to prevent the load moving. This restraint is normally provided by means of lashings secured to the vehicle chassis and load platform or by various baulking arrangements such as loading racks, headboards and chocks.
This code of practice for the safe loading of heavy vehicles has been prepared to provide owners, drivers, operators and loading staff with guidance in the basic safety principles that must be followed generally, and in particular the precautions that must be taken to ensure the safe carriage of a number of the more common types of load, including containers, pallets, construction equipment, logs and sawn timber. Other methods of securing loads are acceptable, providing a certifying engineer has certified the system.Tests may also have to be conducted to confirm that the security of the load meets the criteria specified.
The code provides a range of valuable information based on proven good practices in this field and has been influenced particularly by the increasingly higher performance capabilities of modern vehicles.
The skill is not only in the driving of the truck but also in the safe securing of the load.
Study the more detailed advice given in this code of practice on the safe loading of heavy vehicles.
If you are in doubt about the safety of your load, seek guidance from another experienced person.
Last updated: 16 July 2014