Lighter, Faster, Better, But Be Careful: Light Flatbeds Increase the Need for Safety Training

Weight has always been a problem in the trucking world. The heaviness of a load is just as much of a constraint as the size, and many times it’s the primary consideration. There are numerous regulations about the overall weight of a truck and even just the weight of the trailer and load. Cities might restrict access for overweight trucks and only grant a small number of licenses for legal road use. Many county road systems across the country put a cap on how heavy a truck can be to safely use their roads.

But the loads of cargo, while the majority of the weight problem, aren’t the only consideration. Trailers and the trucks themselves are heavy. Even flatbed trailers, with are the least bulky of the various trailer types, add hundreds or thousands of pounds against limitations. That’s why there’s been a continuing race to develop flatbed trailers that are lighter and lighter without losing durability.

Utility Trailers have recently developed flatbeds that are between four hundred and eight hundred pounds lighter than traditional trailers. The design focuses on being just as durable and strong as other models by having the right mix of steel and aluminum, and it looks like they’re meeting their goals.

Why do you need to keep an eye on safety if your truckers are using lighter equipment?

Lighter flatbeds that are carrying heavy, compact loads aren’t a problem. Experienced truckers are used to adjusting to changes in cargo weight and operating different equipment. But large, light issues are just as problems as empty trailers: they can catch on high winds, cause unexpected drag, and increase the risk of overturning during quick maneuvers. Truckers who are used to exclusively operating flatbeds always had that weight to hold down the vehicle, even as it also slowed it down. Make sure you train your drivers are how to operate lightly loaded and even empty flatbeds.

Good training programs and extra attention to safety make your drivers safer. They also make your company a better place to work at. Go to J.E.B. Insurance Services, LLC. to see how good safety records and investment in employee training can improve your rates. We provide commercial truck insurance in the states of Florida, Georgia, Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Illinois, Iowa, and Nebraska.

David Ott

David Ott