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As a carrier, your customers count on you to do everything you can to protect their precious cargo. That’s why proper tarp maintenance is an element of your job you can’t ignore. Any holes, rips or tears can expose loads to the elements. This opens the door for damage to shipments as well as your bottom line. Whether you’re a fleet manager or a driver, knowing how to care for this essential equipment is paramount. With that said, here are a few tips that can help you get a handle on how to repair a flatbed tarp.
Drivers rely on tarps to keep their cargos safe and clean while in transit. Once the run is completed, many truckers simply stash them away until it’s time to hit the road again. But tarps can do so much more than cover shipments. From home improvement projects to recreational purposes, a heavy-duty vinyl tarp comes in handy for many tasks that don’t involve your truck. Keep reading for some unconventional ways to use your flatbed tarp.
Truckers and fleet managers today have many choices when it comes to covering and protecting their cargo. In the past, flatbed trailers required drivers to spend hours of back-breaking labor tarping their loads. For oversized or oddly shaped deliveries, this process could be even more time-consuming, if not hazardous. The introduction of tarping systems has made it possible for items to be tarped much more easily and safely. Consisting of retractable tarps attached to a lightweight framework on rails, they offer greater ease of use as well as requiring only a fraction of the time to cover the entire trailer.
There’s no question: A tarping system is a big investment. It’s no wonder some outfits say tarp system price is their #1 factor when buying a system. But buying based on price alone can be a costly gamble. Here are three reasons not to cut corners when buying a retractable tarp system.
Preventing tarp system wear and tear is the best way to extend the life of your investment. While you can’t avoid wear and tear completely, there are steps you can take to reduce tarp damage.
In the truck driving industry, safety always comes first. Take the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration that regulates commercial vehicle operations. According to the FMCSA, the agency is “dedicated to improving the safety of commercial motor vehicles (CMV) and saving lives.” A major aspect of drivers’ safety involves securing their freight load while in transit. Whether you have a load of sand, rock, live poultry or race cars, the load must be fully secure at all times.
Hauling cargo means drivers often are fighting against the clock. In the rush to stay on schedule, fleet managers and owner-operators have to get a lot done in a relatively short period. However, there should always be time taken to confirm a load is properly secured to prevent injuries and damage.
Here are some of the most important tips drivers and fleet managers need to know about how to keep their loads secure on a flatbed trailer.
When transporting flatbed freight loads, the load itself is exposed to the elements. Rain, sand and heat can batter down a load — not to mention the lack of privacy that can invite criminal entities looking to steal freight. Strapping, tarping and securing flatbed loads is the primary mode of protection for freight on a flatbed trailer. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has set cargo securement rules to better ensure flatbed freight is fully protected while in transit.
Differences between standard and retractable tarps.
Learn the steps to take to properly tarp a trailer load.