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Are Ratchet Straps Safe? All You Need to Know

Are Ratchet Straps Safe? All You Need to Know

When transporting a load - be it a single washing machine or a fleet of vehicles - one consideration should always be at the top of your list: safety. Sure, people have timescales and budgets to stick to, but none of that matters if the load you’re transporting gets damaged or, worse, yourself or other road users are injured.

If you’re looking for a safe, secure way to tie down a load, ratchet straps are a logical choice. Simple to use, affordable and readily available, they’re trusted by transport operators across the globe. The straightforward, tried and tested design of ratchet straps makes them safe and dependable - but only when they’re used and maintained correctly.

Essential safety tips

So, we’ve established that ratchet straps are safe to use, even for beginners - but there are a few precautions and pieces of information you need to know before you get started. Without further ado, here are our top ratchet strap safety tips to help keep you, other road users and your cargo safe.

Practice the correct technique

Even if you invest in high-quality, brand-new straps, they won’t do their job correctly if you don’t use them as their manufacturer intended. For example, always ensure that the straps are tight - you shouldn’t be able to detect any slack in the webbing. Don’t forget to lock the handle down after you’ve tightened the strap to prevent it from coming loose on the move and, importantly, always choose a suitable attachment point.

Read the label carefully

Different ratchet straps are rated to transport different loads. Some thinner straps are only suitable for cargo weighing up to 250kg, for instance, while beefier, heavy duty versions can support up to 10 tonnes! With such an enormous disparity between heavy and light duty ratchet straps, it’s absolutely crucial that you use the correct strap for your load. Never exceed the minimum breaking force or lashing capacity (LC), which should be listed on the label.

You’ll also notice that the label clearly states that the strap is ‘not for lifting.’ This is an important point to remember. Don’t be tempted to use ratchet straps to tow a vehicle or lift cargo because they’re simply not designed for it.

Care and maintenance

Although ratchet straps can last for a number of years, particularly if they’re used sparingly, their lifespan is dramatically affected by poor maintenance and a lack of care on the part of the user. Always store your straps in a clean, dry environment, away from the sun’s UV rays. Moisture, dirt and sunlight can all compromise the strap’s usability and safety, dramatically reducing its lifespan.

Get your ratchet straps online today

Looking to buy your first ratchet straps? As one of the UK’s leading ratchet strap manufacturers, we have plenty of different products to choose from here at Taut Strap. Explore the full range and place your order online today.

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