Cargo metal banding and pallet plastic strapping can be very useful for consolidating lengths of steel, pipe and other solid objects into bundles and single units. However, this method of securing loads is not suitable for just any type of load. Strapping a load to a pallet should not be a quick fix solution when the goods should actually be crated or caged for maximum security during delivery by truck.
When using metal banding in conjunction with pallet freight and wooden skids caution needs to be taken. First of all, ensure that the item can be suitably supported by the pallet, skid or frame. Then consider if the metal banding will be too strong, as it can actually lift or cut through softer varieties of wooden pallet boards, making it a poor securing device for this type of timber.
Guidelines for Using Plastic Strapping and Metal Banding for Shipping
How to use steel or plastic banding straps for packing before shipping
- Use a high grade wooden pallet that will be able to withstand the tension of the metal strapping.
- Make sure the timber bearer is also banded to the product, as this will make it easier to lift it with a forklift.
- Ensure the product you are strapping is hard enough to hold the tension. Soft products like some types of cardboard will not hold the tension, causing the bands to come loose and consequently the product will move.
Common Preventable Scenarios When Using Plastic and Metal Strapping
Poor strapping practices can lead to damaged goods. The freight often looks safe and secure at the start, but in fact it’s only a matter of time before the tension takes its toll. The table below demonstrates how incorrect strapping can cause damage to goods and create a road hazard.
Poor Packaging Example
The cardboard packaging is too soft
While the load may appear to be secure, the bands will come loose during the transport, causing the product to move
A low grade wooden pallet has been used to carry the freight
The goods have been strapped to the pallet, but the tension has pulled off the front pallet board, causing the straps to loosen. This has resulted in the goods moving in transit
Use a high grade wooden pallet that will be able to withstand the tension of the metal banding
Plastic strapping has been used to restrain the load
The plastic strapping has either stretched, or sharp pallet edges have cut through the strapping, resulting in goods falling off the pallet in transit
While plastic strapping can be used to bundle items together, it is NOT designed to restrain a load. Metal strapping would be a better solution. In this case, the goods could potentially have been crated for transport
The metal strap has been placed directly around sheets of glass
Damage to glass sheets. The metal strap has caused the glass to crack in transit
Metal strapping should not be in direct contact with freight items, but used in conjunction with cardboard, packing or metal angles to avoid damage to the goods