Cleveland CFS freight blocking & bracing

Importance of Blocking & Bracing Cleveland CFS Cargo

Blocking & bracing are essential to ensure maximum protection of your Cleveland CFS cargo.

As our logistics professionals can explain, meticulous planning is critical in container loads to ensure equal weight distribution during transit. It’s especially important for damage prevention when moving larger-sized loads.

Properly securing cargo may take a bit of extra effort, but it ultimately saves you time and money, increases safety, protects business relationships, and is required by state and federal laws.

We work to correctly block & brace every portion of loaded freight containers, ensuring your cargo gets where it needs to be – intact, on time, every time.

What is Blocking & Bracing?

Blocking is the means of preventing loads from moving laterally (side-to-side, front-to-back). Bracing, meanwhile, is the means of preventing vertical movement (up-and-down). Failure to brace properly can result in loads jumping over the blocks. And if the blocks aren’t implemented properly, the braces aren’t going to hold.

Visualize your heavy load resting in a container. Some assume that because it’s heavy, it’s unlikely to budge much. This is a miscalculation – a potentially catastrophic one. As our Cleveland CFS cargo experts can explain, once a container is moving, the internal object’s momentum in any direction is going to be proportionate to its weight.

Whatever the mode – whether it’s rail, truck, or ship – proper blocking, bracing, and loading is critical. It’s also important to understand that these techniques differ from load-to-load.

In the case of CFS shipments prepped for intermodal transport (cross-country or international), expect the potential for all kinds of jostling movements, including:

  • Forward surges
  • Front-to-back pitching
  • Side-to-side rolling
  • Up-and-down heaving
  • Irregular motions
  • Vibrations
  • Sudden impacts

When your shipment is properly blocked and braced, it’s going to be protected on every leg of the journey.

Cleveland CFS freight blocking & bracing

Some of the factors impacting how we block and brace:

  • Container size
  • Loading type (cartons, drums, pallets, etc.)
  • Dimensions
  • Number of pallets or units
  • Weights
  • Whether the cargo will be loaded onto pallets or floor-loaded

A substantial percentage of cargo damage in shipment is the direct result of improperly-secured cargo. Damage to container contents isn’t even the worst thing that can happen in these cases. It can damage equipment, cause a public health threat, and pose safety risks to logistics workers. That’s why our Cleveland CFS cargo team puts such a high priority on this service for our customers in Northeast Ohio.

In addition to promoting safety, proper blocking and bracing is often a money-saver. Certain types of cargo (think luxury cars), you want to keep in mint condition. Ensuring this typically requires a full crate around each unit or groups of units. But other types of cargo can be protected with bracing & blocking, reducing the need for wood – currently priced at a premium. It’s also going to weigh less, so the overall shipping cost will be lower.

This shipment strategy is particularly recommended when preparing items for export shipping. The less lumber used, the faster your shipments can pass export controls and customs. It helps avoid delays and rework costs due to your shipments being rejected or set out.

If your shipments are being prepared for trucking transport, blocking & bracing limits movement inside the trailer/container. It also helps to stabilize the load. That protects your goods and reduces the chances of a trucking accident. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that all cargo being transported on the highway must remain secured on – and within – the transporting vehicle.

Trust Blocking & Bracing to Our Cleveland CFS Cargo Experts

Blocking & bracing is a value-added service that our CFS cargo team offers to clients.

Some of the methods/materials used for blocking and bracing include:

  • Bull boards
  • End gate
  • Air bags with void panels
  • Stretch wrap
  • Ty-Gard
  • Honeycomb void filler
  • 2×4 with 16d nails
  • E-track gate

Because we have these processes fully implemented in our shipping service processes, we can recommend the most cost-effective method to maximize safe transport.

Different freight may require different configurations. In addition to taking measures to prevent cargo from moving front-to-back and side-to-side, we must ensure the weight is evenly distributed across the container floor.

If you have questions about our blocking & bracing services, our dedicated logistics team pros can provide answers, and help formulate the best shipping strategy for your goods and materials.

Contact On Time Delivery & Warehouse by calling (440) 826-4630 or send us an email.

Additional Resources:

Driver’s Handbook on Cargo Securement, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

More Blog Entries:

Understanding Cleveland Container Freight Station (CFS) Services, Jan. 30, 2022, Northeast Ohio Container Freight Blog

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