Are you safely restraining your load?
Road accidents can be caused by any number of different circumstances. Drivers must be prepared for sudden obstacles they may encounter on the road, but they often forget about obstacles on their own vehicle.
When cargo is not properly secured, it can catch drivers by surprise and result in an accident. Falling items can damage other cars and cause deadly wrecks.
Restraining your load properly can help you avoid injuries or fatal accidents while keeping your cargo undamaged and complying with the law.
The National Transport Commission suggests following an easy 10 step process when restraining your cargo. From planning the load to loading the vehicle and driving accordingly to load and driving conditions.
In particular when planning the load, it is important to understand the cargo’s characteristics (weight, size, fragility, etc.) and thus choose a suitable vehicle for the size and type of load.
Once the vehicle and load have been assessed, the next step is to select the restraint method that is best suited: tie-down, direct restraint or a combination of both.
The position of the cargo is key to help maintain the stability of the vehicle. Keeping the centre of gravity low and close to the vehicle’s centreline, loading heavy objects first, spreading the load evenly and facing dangerous projections away from the driver are some of the actions you can take to control the stability of the vehicle.
Additionally, it is vital to check your vehicle’s structures and ensure your restraint equipment is in good working condition and is strong enough to restrain your load.
For your safety we highly recommend to always inspect your restraint equipment before each trip and use rated products to suit your application when purchasing new load restraint equipment.
For more information on how to safely restraint your load visit NTC website: ntc.gov.au