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How to Tie Down a Load on a Flatbed Truck

Isuzu F Series flatbed
There are plenty of reasons why it’s important to know how to tie down a load on a flatbed truck properly. From ensuring that you don’t lose your property to more practical safety reasons, it’s critical to know how to strap down a load on a flatbed trailer. Badger Truck & Auto Group is here to show you how it’s done as well as educate Chicago area drivers about flatbed strapping regulations.


How to Secure a Load on Flatbed Trucks

To ensure that your cargo is properly secured, consider whether your items will need to be protected against the elements. Additionally, it’s important to know the weight of your items as well as what equipment you should be using.

The two most common types of securement devices are:

  • Chains with binders
  • Nylon straps

Learn how to tie down a load on a flatbed truck with these simple steps:

  1. After determining the weight of your items, load them into the bed of your truck. Then, you’ll need to divide the total weight of the cargo by the load capacity of an individual chain or strap.
  2. Inspect the position of the cargo on the trailer. Each item should line up with at least two winches on the side of the trailer. It’s best to use two straps over your items if your cargo is something that could be damaged by chains with binders. If your items won’t be damaged, use two chains with binders to secure those items. Be sure to keep the edges of all items covered with remnant carpet so the cargo isn’t damaged as you tighten the straps or chains.
  3. The next step is threading the hooked end of each strap down through the outer safety rail. It should then be hooked to the underframe. After rolling up the straps, throw them up and over the cargo. On the other side of the trailer, thread the strap ends through the slot in the trailer winches. Twist the winches until the slack of the strap is finally secured around the winch. After that, place the tip of the winch bar into the hole on the side of the winch and bring the bar down as often as needed to ensure that the strap is tightly secured.
  4. Similar to step three, you will need to thread the hooks of the chains down through the safety rail as well. Just like you threw the straps up and over the cargo, do the same for the chains. On the other side of the trailer, thread the hooks of each chain down through the safety rail and to the frame of the trailer. The slack of the chain should be allowed to dangle over the trailer’s side. You’ll then need to place a chain binder on each chain. Take one of the binder’s hooks and attach it to the highest link in the chain that’s reachable for you. Grab the other hook of the binder and pull it down. The handle of the binder goes all the way up before you take the slack in the chain and bring it up as tightly as you can. Slide the bottom hook of the binder over any of the chain links. Place the open end of the winch bar over the end of the binder handle. Lock the binder by pulling the winch bar. Make sure the chain is pulled tight.

F Series Flatbed being loaded by a forklift

Flatbed Strapping Regulations

Listed below are a few flatbed strapping regulations to keep in mind before carrying cargo on Green Bay streets:

  • The sum of the working load limits calculated from all tie downs must be equivalent to at least half the weight of the cargo.
  • Wheeled or tracked vehicles that weigh more than 10,000 pounds are required to have at least four anchor (direct) tie-downs as well as four tightening devices – which must each have a minimum working load limit of 5,000 pounds.
  • Indirect tie-downs must create an angle of 30 degrees to the trailer floor at a minimum.
  • Special calculations are needed if you’re hauling vans, light truck, certain containers, flattened cars, boulders, paper rolls, dressed lumber, or concrete pipes.

Learn More About Cargo Safety with Badger Truck & Auto Group

Now that you know how to tie down a load on a flatbed truck, Badger Truck & Auto Group would be glad to answer any additional questions you may have. Contact us today.


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Badger Truck & Auto Group
Badger Truck & Auto Group
Milwaukee, WI, United States
(414) 344-9500
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