LOAD SECURING: How should the goods be protected during transport?
Load securing procedures are neither optional nor to be neglected. Unfortunately, there are enough incidents of goods being damaged or even lost during transport. Such an incident can result in serious damage or even put the traffic participants in danger.
Load securing is regulated by the European standard EN 12195-2, applicable throughout the European territory in terms of domestic and international freight transport. Here you can find useful information regarding the requirements that must be met in the use of anchoring equipment, as also how to detect equipment needed for the proper securing of goods.
Before entering into a collaboration with a carrier, even in the short term, we recommend you to make sure that he takes care of your goods. At EuropaExpeditie, we make sure that your goods reach their destination safely.
1. What does load securing mean?
Like the safety belt designed for the protection of passengers, also in the case of goods, there is special securing equipment, which does not allow the displacement and even damage of the load during transport.
Load securing is a process that prevents goods from sliding, tipping, rolling, wandering or substantial deformation and rotation in any direction by methods such as locking, blocking, lashing, or combinations of these methods.
2. Securing methods
Load securing be of several types, depending on the type of transported goods:
- Rolling stock: anchoring is done with chains, web lashings with tensioning systems
- oversized loads: anchoring of these loads is carried out only by qualified persons because fixing points must comply with the manufacturer’s instructions
- metallurgical products: being a category of goods prone to displace during transportation, securing these goods requires the use of special equipment
- logs: securing is carried out transversely, using chains, flexible wire, and blocking bars.
3. Securing equipment
As we said earlier, load securing is a complex process that varies depending on the products transported.
3.1. Anchoring systems
For road transport, web lashings or chains are being used most frequently.
They have a tensioning system, called a ratchet, which must remain locked during the entire transport. The ends of these lashings can be hooks/rings that help to be fixed in the anchoring points on the vehicle/load (see image 1)
These chains are most often short link chains with specific hooks or rings to be fixed on the vehicle and/or the goods. The chain tensioning device can be a fixed component of it, or it can be separate (see image 2)
Steel wire ropes
The ropes that can be used for anchoring goods must be by the EN 12195-4 standard. These cables have winch-type tensioning systems (fixed to the vehicle), separate ratchet-type devices, or short ratchet lashing straps.
3.2. Friction enlarging equipment
This equipment can be used in conjunction with other securing methods. High friction material can be used to increase friction between the platform bed and the freight, and also between goods layers when required.
There are different types of high friction material, for example, coatings, carpets, rubber mats, and sheets of paper (antislip-sheets) covered with friction material.
3.3. Blocking bars
They are designed to be mounted in the vehicle either vertically or horizontally, depending on the type of freight to be transported. The newer generations of trucks are delivered together with the blocking bars because the side holes where the bars are attached are not standard sizes.
3.4. Filler materials
We use this equipment in situations where the loaded goods does not sufficiently fill the space between the side walls and no other method is used to secure the load.
The materials that are used to fill the gaps, most of the time, are pallets and air cushions.
3.5. Corner protectors
A corner protector can have one or more functions:
- Protect the lashing from being damaged by the sharp corners of the goods
- Protect the freight from being damaged by the lashing
- Facilitate sliding of the lashing in its longitudinal direction over the freight
- Distribute the lashing force over a wider zone over the freight
3.6. Nets and covers
Securing the goods can also be done with the help of covers or nets. Nets can be made of belts (used as barriers between the products of the load) or ropes/cables (used for anchoring on pallets or the vehicle).
4. Who does the securing of the goods?
Road safety is not only about observing the traffic signs of the traffic participants, but also about the condition of the vehicles and how the freight is secured.
The road transport operators must constantly check the condition of the vehicles with which the transport is carried out and ensure that the equipment provided for fixing the goods:
- correctly fulfill the functions for which they were built
- comply with the necessary conditions for fixing the goods to be anchored
- does not show signs of deterioration (wear, weakening, moisture)
- complies with the international standards in force in the field
Among the sender’s obligations, we find:
- prepare the goods for the carrier’s disposal at the date and time established by the transport order;
- to communicate to the carrier any change in the weight of the goods agreed by the transport order;
- proper packaging of the goods;
- to inform the carrier if there are specific instructions regarding the loading and securing of the goods.
Often, the carrier is the one responsible for loading and anchoring the freight. There are, however, also cases where the sender wants to load and unload the goods, a situation in which the driver must assist with the loading and give instructions on the method of loading. Thus, the driver can be ensured that the goods are loaded correctly and distributed evenly, respecting the maximum allowed weight/ axles.
In situations where the driver is not allowed to assist with loading and anchoring, this aspect must be mentioned in the CMR convention. This guarantees the driver an exemption from bearing responsibility for possible damages that may occur during the transport.
5. How do we proceed at Europa Expeditie?
In more than 25 years of activity in the road freight transport market, we have created a network of partners who meet all eligibility, professionalism, and safety criteria. We provide you with well-equipped trucks that ensure the safety of the goods during transport.
The safety of your goods is also important to us!