Cargo security in road transport

Transport activity has been associated with a number of risks that must not be forgotten in order to ensure high quality and safety of services provided to customers. Therefore, cargo security plays a key role here.

At present, the trick is not just a physical job, i.e. transporting cargo from point A to point B. The trick of the trade is to perform all activities in the entire process in accordance with the law, customer requirements, in a timely manner and at costs acceptable to both parties.

Cargo protection - legal regulations

During the transport of goods, a very large part of the damage is the destruction of cargo. Most often, the direct cause of damage is improper placement and protection of goods.

The proper method of securing goods in our country is regulated by the following legal acts: Road Traffic Law, the EU standard PN-EN 12195, relevant regulations on the type approval of motor vehicles and trailers and their equipment or parts, as well as industry standards, i.e. Transport Law or the CMR Convention.

The above-mentioned legal acts regulate safety requirements during the transport of goods, and also clearly define the security measures that should be applied as well as the scope and rules of responsibility of individual parties to the process. They also indicate that a shipper (loading staff) is responsible for preparing the load for transport, loading and proper placement and securing of the goods on a semi-trailer.

When the door of the semi-trailer/container is closed, after signing the bill of lading, the responsibility is usually transferred automatically to a carrier (driver).

Cargo protection process

The cargo protection process should start with the correct identification of the goods and their properties as well as the packaging in which the goods are located in relation to time, distance and transport conditions.

One of the basic functions of the packaging is the protective function. The transport packaging should completely and effectively protect the product against mechanical and climatic factors that occur during transport and handling of the goods. Of great importance in this case are the ratios of the mass of the packed goods to the mass of the packaging itself, as well as the dimensions and shapes of the packaging, which is associated with the optimal use of the load capacity of the means of transport. Nevertheless, the packaging alone is not enough to safely deliver the parcel to the recipient.

Another form of load protection is the use of a specialized body to transport the load. Choosing the right body allows you to adjust the transport conditions to the properties and requirements imposed by the transported goods, protecting them against possible damage caused by temperature changes, various types of leaks and mechanical damage.

Unsecured or improperly secured cargo moving freely around the cargo space poses a great threat to the driver, people working during loading and unloading and other road users, including pedestrians. Proper protection of the transported goods is a key aspect in the transport process.

Methods of cargo protection

The most commonly used and thus recommended methods of securing loads include:

  • locking using twist connectors,
  • block fastening with dunnage materials such as overcoats, airbags, diagonal and cross slats and spreader frames. Threshold and plate lashings, block lashings between the rows of cargo sections, as well as wooden slats nailed directly to the loading platform, wedges and wedge bearings are also used,
  • lashing with lashings that wrap the load at the top or around, loop lashings, spring lashings and loop lashings,
  • fastening accessories, which include ratchet tensioners (lashing straps), lashing chains, nets and sheets with lashings, ropes, steel tapes, connecting rails for jibs and lashings in the side walls.

It is also possible to use additional fastening protections in the form of: plate spacers, anti-slip mats, scantlings, heat-shrinkable and stretch foil, steel or plastic tapes, angle strips, edge protectors and protective spacers.

To sum up, only properly packed, and thus properly arranged and secured cargo ensures that the transport will proceed without additional, unforeseen complications.

The development of the topic of protection and the security measures used in road transport will be the subject of subsequent articles published on our website.