Trucking Safety: 3 Things Truckers Know about Their Tarps
Any flatbed trucker who has been in the business for any length of time keeps a full inventory of tarps in his/her toolboxes. Truck tarps are an indispensable part of the job that flatbed drivers cannot do without.
To the rest of us, tarps may be something we don’t give much thought to. We may go and buy a blue tarp from time to time to cover the firewood, protect the roof until damage can be fixed, or even to throw over the top of the RV.
Truck drivers have to take them a lot more seriously.
As with any other tool used by the truck driver, truck tarps can make or break a load. That’s why truckers spend so much time worrying about them. It is also why companies such as Mytee Products go out of their way to provide truckers with a full selection of high-quality tarps in numerous sizes, shapes, and forms.
Here are three things experienced truckers know about their tarps:
1. Quality Should Never Be Compromised
It is absolutely true that you get what you pay for when it comes to truck tarps.
The trucker who wants junk can spend very little to get it, and vice-versa. The experienced trucker knows that paying for quality up front is more advantageous in the long run because high-quality tarps last longer and provide a lot more protection.
In short, the trucker who wants maximum protection over the top of his or her loads will pay for quality.
A good quality tarp will hold up in a variety of weather conditions for many years of faithful service.
It will offer protection against the elements, road debris, and other things that could damage cargo while also standing up to the sharp corners and edges that would rip low-quality tarps.
2. Shippers Require Them
More than one rookie flatbed driver has arrived to pick up a load only to discover that the shipper will not release it until it is tarped.
If that driver does not have sufficient tarps on board, he/she must spend time that could be spent earning money driving around looking for a place to buy tarps. Very few things are as frustrating to the flatbed driver as this.
It is true that not all shippers require their loads to be tarped. But more often than not, truck tarps are required so as to limit liability.
The shipper wants the load to arrive safely and completely undamaged, and tarps are one of the means to that end.
3. Government May Require Them
The states have regulations in place dictating that truck drivers are responsible for fully securing their loads prior to departure, and maintaining that securement for the entire course of the journey. Though state laws typically do not detail tarp use, there are times when truck tarps are the only way to secure a load properly.
Take a dump truck hauling loose stone, for example. Regulations require the driver to make sure something keeps that stone in place at all times. The only practical way of securing it is with a truck tarp. The tarp is pulled over the top of the dump and secured on all sides, thus preventing any loose stone from jumping out of the box and striking a car behind the truck.
Flatbed and dump truck drivers cannot get away without having an ample supply of tarps on board. Whether the driver is hauling wood, steel coil, loose stone, gravel, heavy equipment or anything else, the tried-and-true truck tarp offers that layer of protection that keeps the outside out and the cargo within.
Equip operators with the proper tools needed and promote safety to help them avoid injury.
The OPNBar tool, for instance, can help avoid some injuries by providing an ergonomic means of opening shipping containers, checking for low-pressure tires, and aiding operators in releasing the tractor from the trailer.
Please be sure to read OPNBar Extended Instructions & Precautions
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