Is Your Load Secured?
The guide for load securing has been updated.
The securing of a load must be of primary concern for all road users, because not only does effective load securing prevent goods from falling onto roads causing danger to other road users, but it also saves money by ensuring goods arrive at their destination, undamaged.
An updated guide has been produced on GOV.UK to complement the existing guidance and code of practice, to provide operators from different sectors of the industry with useful information on how DVSA and other regulators expect loads to be secured when in transit.
This guide provides a vital role in keeping our roads safe, which should be a priority for all. All commercial vehicles carry some element of risk and operator licensing is designed to reduce this risk as much as possible.
This guide sets out the DVSA’s approach on how to deal with certain types of loads, including industry-specific guidance for a wide range of sectors.
Fit for purpose
Making sure your vehicle is fit for purpose should be the first step in load securing, you should consider the different types of loads being carried when buying vehicles. There are aftermarket products which can provide bespoke securing products to adapt vehicles to ensure they’re fit for purpose. There are also specialist companies who can give advice on the right load-securing system for your operation and the loads you carry.
Load the vehicle properly
You should always start by stacking the load against the headboard and keeping the centre of gravity as low as possible. Make sure it’s stable without lashings to reduce the risk of it falling over during transit and unloading.
If the load is unstable, think about what you can do to support it, this could be done by either putting it in a box, stillage or transport frame.
If the load is not against the headboard, this increases the risk of sliding so you will need to think of ways to prevent the load from moving, this may include extra lashings, sails, chocks or blocking.
It is important to remember the headboard is the key part of a load-securing system, if any damage occurs to it, ensure this is fixed as soon as possible.
Whatever loading method you choose, the load restraint system needs to secure the load to the vehicle chassis and prevent movement. Not all loads or vehicles are the same so choose a securing system that works for your vehicle but ensures the load is not moving without creating other risks.
You can read the full updated guide here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/load-securing-vehicle-operator-guidance/load-securing-vehicle-operator-guidance