Skids were used extensively before the creation of the double-faced pallet in the 1930s, but what is a skid pallet? A skid is a single-deck loading platform which lacks a bottom deck. As such, it is easy to see that these do not have the same amount of stability during transportation as pallets do. This should be taken into consideration when deciding whether to use a skid or a pallet. In a way the skid is a relatively flimsy and outdated option, and the type of items which can be packed onto it safely is limited. Packing dense items on small wooden skids, for example, is not recommended.
Metal and wooden skid freight
At Freight Quote Australia, we specialise in shipping skids, including wooden, timber and metal skids.
The standard skid dimensions for freight are the same as for pallets. They are usually 1165mm x 1165mm.
A Few Guidelines for Packing on Skids
As with pallets items on skids must be secured so that they will be safe and not move during transport or handling. The wooden skid itself needs to be sturdy and in good enough condition for a forklift to handle it.
- Don’t strap large and heavy machinery to small skids. Small softwood timber skids are not designed to hold these items and can easily collapse. This is a concern from both a damage and safety point of view.
- Secure your items with stretch wrapping which is adequately tensioned to hold the goods in place and is securely wrapped around the skid itself.
- Some items may need to be strapped into place to secure the load before wrapping.
- One layer of stretch wrapping is not enough. Wrap extra layers of stretch wrap around and over the top of the goods.
Hazards Associated with Skid Freight
The repercussions of poorly packaged skids not only involve damage to goods, but can have safety implications as well. Strapping large and heavy machinery items to small skids can present a serious problem during handling. Take care to avoid situations described in the table below. You’ll notice that in many cases, skids should not have been used in the first place.
Poor Packaging Example
Steel bars only stretch wrapped to the skid
Steel bar coming loose from the skid and falling from a moving vehicle onto the road
Using cardboard to contain a shipment of heavy loose metal brackets
Metal brackets breaking through the cardboard and falling off the skid in transit
Could easily topple over during handling, causing damage to the machinery and a serious safety hazard
Items like this should be fully crated to ensure safe and proper handling and transport