There are various effective ways to secure cargo for safe transit. However, despite the implementation of cargo-securing system, the potential for slippage remains a significant threat that can compromise the integrity of the cargo.

The use of lashing, strapping, chains, dunnage bags, to secure cargo is excellent for ensuring that cargo is firmly secured and unable to move around during transportation. This not only protects the cargo but also ensures the safety of the personnel who load and unload the cargo. However, load shift can still occur, and for this reason, anti-slip solutions need to be incorporated as a key part of the load restraint methodology.

The IMO/ILO/UNECE Code for packing cargo transport units is an international set of guidelines designed to ensure the safe and secure packaging and transportation of cargo when it comes to shipping containers, trailers, truck beds and more.

Part of this code emphasizes the importance of anti-slippage. Examine how utilizing anti-slip mats for load restraint can enhance the safety and security of cargo during transportation.

Anti-Slip Mats for Load Restraint
Anti-Slip Mats for Load Restraint

Friction Coefficient

The CTU Code refers to requirements for ensuring that load shift is minimised or eliminated. To ensure that slippage doesn’t occur, you need to consider the friction coefficient, denoted by the symbol µ. Section 5.2.19 of the CTU Code emphasises that the friction between the cargo and the flooring upon which it is stacked must be considered when calculating forces that can act on the cargo during transit.

If there is a very low-value friction coefficient, then the force required to slide the objects will be significantly less. The objective is to maximize the friction coefficient, and the use of rubber matting can aid in achieving this.

The recommended friction coefficient between the cargo and the transportation unit’s floor should be at least 0.2 µ for all modes of transport, whether by shipping container, train, aeroplane, truck bed, or any other form of transportation. The recommendation made in the CTU Code is based on industry professionals’ where the friction coefficient of 0.2 µ has been found to be an effective degree to prevent cargo from shifting or sliding during transportation.

Anti-slip cargo mats for load restraint, such as those provided by X-Pak Global, are a highly effective yet simple way to significantly ramp up the friction coefficient between the cargo and the flooring it’s on, to ensure better load securement.

By placing these rubber anti-slip mats under the goods, the friction coefficient can be increased from around 0.6 µ to 0.9 µ ‒ significantly more than the CTU Code recommends as a minimum.

The CTU code makes reference to surface pairings, such as the pairing of wooden pallets and steel flooring. This pairing will determine the friction coefficient and how easily goods will shift around when being transported. Anti-slip rubber mats placed on the transportation unit’s floor will significantly increase the friction coefficient through the change of surface pairings. Instead of pairing wood with steel, for example, you are now pairing wood with rubber or steel with rubber.

Anti-slip rubber mats can also be used as an intermediate layer when stacking goods, as well as an anti-slip device for placing underneath straps and lashes to minimize their movement horizontally in transit.

In many cargo transport load restraint laws around the world, the minimum friction coefficient is a legislated requirement to ensure the safety of cargo and personnel working in shipping yards and warehouses.

Temperature

Rubber mats might be highly effective at increasing the friction coefficient; however, rubber can be sensitive to extreme temperatures. Therefore, careful consideration should be made when choosing a rubber matting product that will last in extremely hot or cold environments.

Rubber can be prone to melting when heated and could even combust if exposed to direct flames. This is naturally a safety concern, which means that not just any kind of rubber should be used for anti-slip mats.

When rubber is exposed to extremely cold temperatures, it can become more brittle and less flexible because it is made from polymers. When exposed to cold, their molecules become less mobile, making the material stiffer and less pliable, and more prone to breaking.

Therefore, anti-slip rubber mats must be capable of withstanding extremely high or extremely low temperatures to ensure their reliability.

Rubber mats often need to be used in refrigerated containers, which are sometimes set to sub-zero temperatures, and these rubber mats also sometimes need to be used in containers that are exposed to significant amounts of heat from the sun.

The anti-slip mats supplied by X-Pak Global are capable of withstanding temperatures ranging from -30˚C centigrade to as high as 100˚C. This means that it is highly unlikely that the rubber mats will deteriorate or become damaged due to extreme temperatures or temperature shifts. These rubber anti-slip mats are ideal for a wide range of cargo scenarios.

Other Features

Generally, it is expected for non-slip or anti-slip mats to meet high demands of tensile strength owing to the amount of pressure that is placed upon them when heavy cargo is loaded on top. A minimum of 0.6 N/mm² of tensile strength is generally the accepted standard, and it needs to be capable of stretching with an elongation break point of at least 60%. This means that rubber anti-slip mats need to be manufactured to the highest possible quality.

Anti-Slip Mats in a Shipping Container
Anti-slip mats used inside a shipping container to prevent movement of IBCs during transport

Our anti-slip mats are made from high-quality recycled rubber granulate, which is held together using a special polyurethane binder. This makes our rubber mats both affordable and environmentally friendly, as they can be reused many times before needing to be replaced.

Our anti-slip mats for load restraint can be supplied in rolls or as smaller strips. Alternatively, custom cuts can also be supplied to fit whatever container you may need them for.

Want to gain access to our wide range of cargo-securing equipment and accessories, including our CTU Code-compliant anti-slip mats for load restraint? Contact us at X-Pak Global today!