Securing Materials Safety

Securing Materials

If a load or material isn’t properly secured it can injure you if it shifts or falls.

Risk factors for operators when securing loads: being struck by parts of the load or material

Here is an example

A worker was killed by a falling pipe when unloading a transport trailer. The worker was in the process of unstrapping the load when three high-density polyethylene pipes, weighing about 500 lbs. each, rolled off the top tier. The pipes were resting on dunnage but it failed to block or restrain the load once the strap was removed. If a load isn’t properly secured, it can cause major problems. 

Identify controls

There are many methods and materials available to secure loads and cargo on vehicles and intermodal

containers. These methods can include:

  • strapping (steel, polyester, nylon, and polypropylene)
  • fasteners (nails and bolts)
  • dunnage
  • lashing (ropes, cables, wires, and chains).


To prevent injuries, follow proper work practices to secure loads.

Workers and operators should be trained to recognize the danger to themselves and the public from materials becoming dislodged.

Place straps over loads and tie down material with lashing.