Alberta’s Commercial Vehicle Enforcement officers are taking part in International Roadcheck June 6 to 8 in a commercial vehicle inspection marathon.
These inspections help save lives by reducing collisions and other incidents by taking unsafe vehicles and drivers off of Alberta’s highways.The 30th annual International Roadcheck is a major undertaking by members of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA), which includes Canada, Mexico and the United States. Commercial motor vehicle enforcement personnel conduct inspections and collect data.
While checking for compliance with safe load regulations is always a part of roadside inspections, the CVSA is highlighting cargo securement this year as a reminder of its importance.
Cargo must be firmly immobilized and secured on or within a vehicle. While safe cargo securement principles and regulations apply to every item carried for delivery, they also apply to anything else on or in the truck, including dunnage (pieces of wood, matting or similar material used to keep cargo in position), tools and equipment. Shovels, blocks, webbing, chains, spare tires, brooms, forklifts, pallet jacks, winches and ratchets all must be secured. Also, remember that even in an enclosed van trailer, many large or heavy loads may need additional securement before they are safe. Bungee cords and tarp straps must not be used as primary securement, according to the government of Alberta.
Regulations require tie-downs to be attached and secured in a manner that prevents them from becoming loose, unfastening, opening or releasing while the vehicle is in transit. However, over time, tie-downs can become worn, torn or damaged. Make sure tie-downs are inspected for damage. CVSA’s out-of-service criteria include a helpful tie-down defect table for chain, wire rope, cordage, synthetic webbing, steel strapping, fittings or attachments and anchor points. If worn or damaged, tie-downs should be removed and replaced.
There may also be best practices related to the type of load being hauled. If a shipment is unique, research it to find out what works best. Always make sure the load is properly contained, immobilized and secured so that it cannot leak, spill, blow off, fall from, fall through or otherwise be dislodged from the vehicle. Also, it must not shift to such an extent that the vehicle’s stability or manoeuvrability is affected. Loads that shift can not only cause collisions, but can also damage equipment. Improper cargo and equipment securement violations will affect a company’s safety rating.
According to the Alberta government, the most common load securement violations include:
•failure to prevent shifting/loss of load
•failure to secure truck equipment (tarps, dunnage, doors, tailgates and spare tires)
•damaged tie-downs (unacceptable wear on chains or cuts and tears on web straps)