US Cargo Control Employees Experience Hands-On Training

Flatbed training on products from uscargocontrol.com
Instructor Freddie Jones (left) leads an interactive hands-on training session with employees of US Cargo Control.

Sixty employees of US Cargo Control were recently treated to a Continuing Education opportunity at their offices in Urbana, IA. Instructors from nearby Kirkwood Community College’s Professional Truck Driving program led four separate two-hour training sessions featuring hands-on experience with a variety of tools and equipment drivers use to secure cargo on a flatbed trailer.

Freddie Jones, operations manager for Kirkwood’s Truck Driving program, and Dennis Carson, instructor for Kirkwood’s Truck Driving program, were the presenters for Friday’s training sessions. Both men have many years of real-life experience driving trucks.

The training began with a short video detailing some of the cargo securement laws that drivers must abide by, what a driver’s CSA (compliance, safety, accountability) score is and different ways it can be affected, as well as how to calculate Working Load Limit weights and the number of tie-downs necessary for a particular load.

The group then headed outside where a flatbed trailer was waiting with a skid loader and stack of pallets, both ready to be properly secured.

Hands-on items

Some of the equipment US Cargo Control employees learned to use included ratchet straps, tie down straps, winches, winch bars, chain, chain binders, corner protectors, tarps and tarp straps. Best-practices stories were also shared with the group.

Jones and Carson learned a few things from the US Cargo Control employees, as well. They were excited to discover tools offered by uscargocontrol.com like the Peerless QuikBinder™ Plus Ratchet Loadbinder that is easier to use than a more traditional ratchet chain binder; and the VeeBoards® Extension Handle that helps position corner protectors atop tall loads while the driver remains standing on the ground.

Ongoing Education

David Urlaub, US Cargo Control’s training coordinator, says the benefits of this type of training to the company’s employees are immeasurable. “Giving USCC employees the chance to use the products so they can take that back to their jobs and pass along correct information to the drivers who use our products is extremely important,” Urlaub said. He added, “We can better understand what a truck driver goes through on a daily basis to tie down their loads, and see how physical this job is for the drivers. Any products that make their life easier could be good additions to our site.”

While employees of US Cargo Control have ongoing product training throughout the year, this is the first hands-on training session. This training was funded by 260E dollars. The goal, according to Urlaub, is to have this type of training on an annual basis going forward.

Flatbed Tarps: Lumber Tarps and Steel Tarps

Flatbed truck tarps are an essential for any flatbed truck driver. There are differences between a lumber tarp and a steel tarp, as well as features to look for in both.

Lumber tarp
A lumber tarp is generally used for long haul truckers to protect lumber, hay, pallets, and other bulky cargo. It is designed with a flap to fully cover the ends of the load.

One of our best-selling heavy duty lumber tarps unfolded:

Steel tarp
A steel tarp are sometimes sized slightly smaller than a lumber tarp and is four-sided to protect loads of steel rods, sheets, cables, etc. that have a lower profile.

Weights and construction
Tarps also come in different weights so there’s something that will work for nearly any job. Although all of our tarps are made of PVC-coated polyester for excellent tear resistance, the weight of the fabric differs between the lightweight, mid-weight and heavy-duty styles. Depending on the drop size (height), each tarp has either two or three rows of D-rings running the length of the tarp

The d-ring construction also differs slightly. Lightweight and midweight tarps are designed with fabric abrasion strips that run the entire length of the tarp to add protection:

Image of mid-weight lumber tarp d-rings

 

 

 

 

 

Heavyweight tarps have additional fabric abrasion pads stitched to the tarp underneath the D-ring:

Image of heavy-duty lumber tarp d-ring

 

 

 

 

 

Colors
Many of our stock tarps are available in black, red or blue on our website. Several are also available in green, yellow, gray, and white by calling our sales team toll free at 866-444-9990.

Tarp accessories
Repair kit. Even the most durable tarp can tear over time, so be sure to keep a tarp repair kit on hand. It includes a patch and vinyl cement so you won’t have to order the two separately.
Corner protectors. These are an inexpensive way to protect your tarp from abrasions, as well as your cargo. Our corner protectors are available in steel and plastic in a variety of sizes.
Rubber tarp straps and rubber ropeTarp straps come in a variety of lengths, in both natural rubber and EPDM rubber. Rubber rope is another great option since you can create custom length straps when paired with a .