rigid lorry ready for freight ferry

Securing a Load on a Ferry in Winter


24/11/16 UPDATED GUIDE Secure Your Freight Ferry Cargo This Autumn & Winter

With the Autumn and Winter months now upon us, it is the time of year when ferry companies remind us all about securing loads correctly to prepare for the bad weather.

lashing pointsIf you are travelling by ferry during the autumn and winter periods there are some very important points you should note to ensure that your vehicle is suitable to be transported and your load remains secure.

The first point is that you should always make sure your cargo is stowed and secured appropriately for sea transport, using straps or other methods.

The second, most important, point is that all vehicles over 3.5 tonne must be able to be properly secured to the ship. This means that all freight units travelling by ferry must have the correct number of lashing brackets - that is usually at least 4 fitted to the chassis on each side to ensure safe loading and lashing. Vehicles less than 9m long and weighing between 3.5 and 20 tonnes will normally require a minimum of 2 on each side. A graphic showing the location of these is below.

If you have a vehicle which arrives at port with an unsuitable method of lashing your vehicle to the ship then there is a good chance your vehicle will be refused for shipment. This applies all year round, but is especially true going into bad or anticipated bad weather conditions.

For any trailer that is shipping unaccompanied should not be supported on their landing legs during shipment, and should be supported by a trestle placed in the area of the draw-plate. Any trailer which is listed for shipment without suitable placing to support a trestle will be refused for shipment.

Ultimately in any situation it is the loading officer and Master of the ship will have the final decision as to whether or not to accept vehicles for shipment. It is the vehicle operators responsibility to ensure that when travelling by ferry your vehicle and your load are as secure as they possibly can be to enable safe passage.

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