Unsecured loads can cause damage, serious crashes and death by falling onto the road and into the path of other vehicles. Road users carrying a load either on the back or top of a vehicle or trailer are responsible for ensuring that it does not move, flap, sway or blow off. Police and transport inspectors will fine drivers if a load is not secure. Cover, restrain or store items securely to prevent damage or a serious crash and a fine.
Use a tarp to cover garden waste and rubbish or other loose materials such as soil or sand so they don’t fall out and to minimise debris.
Use straps to tightly restrain large and heavy items. Evenly distribute the loads and secure each item to prevent movement. Anti-slip mats can help to prevent items from sliding. Ropes are not recommended but if you use them, ensure they are in good condition and knots are tied tight. Loads must not hang over wheel guards, lights or number plates.
Tools should be stored in boxes that are secured to the tray. Larger tools should be secured by straps or a cargo net if they do not fit within the body of a vehicle or trailer. Safe loads must not be oversized or overhanging and if towed, must be on a roadworthy trailer.
Loads that protrude or overhang from the front, back or side of a vehicle or trailer must be within specified limits. For more information, download the Transport Tasmania Carrying Loads document.
Before attaching a trailer to a vehicle, ensure the vehicle and trailer are roadworthy. Check the tyres’ condition and make sure both brake lights, connectors and couplings work. If adding weight to the trailer, check the vehicle manual and ensure the load isn’t more than the towing capacity for the vehicle. Take extra care when towing a trailer, particularly when turning.