A quick checklist for transporting abnormal load
15/01/2020
A quick checklist for transporting abnormal load

Drivers are responsible for ensuring that an abnormal load is safe before setting out on the road. This can be a big burden, given the potential risks, so it’s essential to ensure that you understand what checks are involved. Both the police and officers from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency can stop a vehicle if they believe there is a problem and can also issue fines.
 
Interior checks
 

  • Check the windscreen to ensure that it is not cracked, scratched or discoloured.
  • Examine the interior mirrors, looking out for signs of damage or pieces of glass that are missing. Make sure the mirrors are not insecure or blocked from view.
  • Check the windscreen washer is working and that the wipers are not damaged or missing.
  • Can you see through the area of the windscreen that the wipers cover? Stickers etc are fine but not in this part of your view.
  • Is everything working properly on the dashboard, including the instruments and gauges?
  • Check that the steering wheel is functioning properly and is not jammed and that there are no issues with the power steering.
  • Is the right vehicle height marker in the cab displayed correctly and does the horn work?
  • Make sure that the brakes work, that there is no air build up, the footwell is clear and the various brakes for both the tractor and trailer work correctly.
  • Ensure that the seatbelts function properly when plugged in and are not damaged or frayed.
 
Exterior checks
 
  • It’s essential to ensure that all your lights function well. This check should include the indicators, stop lamps and marker lights.
  • Turn the engine on and check underneath the vehicle, looking for fuel leaks. Make sure that you’re not seeing excessive exhaust smoke too.
  • Is the vehicle battery in good condition and have you checked to ensure that it is not leaking?
  • Top up AdBlue diesel exhaust fluid levels if necessary.
  • Make sure any spray submission flaps work properly and are secure and not damaged or blocked with debris.
  • Review the fastening devices you’re using on the vehicle to ensure that they are in good working order.
  • Check the tread depth of tyres (which should be at least 1mm), tighten wheel nuts if necessary and make sure there are no deep gouges in the tyre side wall.
  • Look for damage, leaks and wear and tear to the brake lines.
  • Turn on electrical switches to see if they work and examine cables to ensure they are insulated and securely connected.
  • Make sure the trailer is securely attached and all locking devices are in position.
  • Ensure you have the right type of load securing system and that the load is not likely to move around in transit.
  • Examine the number plate to verify that it is undamaged, visible and not covered.
  • Make sure reflectors are in place, properly fitted, not damaged and the right colour.
  • Check vehicle markings for any deterioration or any that are obscured.
 
It’s crucial to carry out checks before beginning your journey, and potentially also at key points on the road too.

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