When goods leave a company and enter the distribution cycle, the only thing that is protecting them is their packaging. Damages during the transportation of goods are a threat that can bring about high costs for the company. There are a few methods to prevent transport damages of loads, the most important being packaging optimization.

What are the most common transport damages of loads?

During the distribution process, goods are subject to a series of hazards:

  • First, sudden movements or hard shocks are common, in addition to scratches and drops while handling the load. Vibrations, accelerations and decelerations, along with repetitive impacts or shocks may endanger the load.
  • In addition, the climate can also cause damages during transportation, since the load may be exposed to moisture, cold or intense heat, sea spray (in the case of transport by sea) or dust and sand.
  • There are also hazards to the goods related to biological factors such as rodents, insect pests, mildew and mold. Liquid or sold spills and fire may also result in damaged cargo and imply high costs for the company.

Hard braking, sharp turns, vibrations and crushed goods also lead to damages during transportation on the road. When it comes to sea freight, the load may be compromised by sudden sideway inclinations, extreme moisture or shocks while loading. Rail transport may cause sudden motions due to hard braking or during the coupling of railcars, which may lead to transport damages of loads.

How to prevent these damages

Taking planning, safety and control measures in the distribution process can significantly reduce damages during transportation.

More specifically, it is vital to find the right packaging for the type of product and the distribution cycle in order to prevent cargo losses and shrinkage.  

The packaging industry offers many solutions nowadays:

  • You may opt for a packaging that can withstand the forces that the cargo is subject to during transportation (vibrations, drops, temperature or pressure changes…).
  • There are also packages that can be easily handled, thereby preventing drops or other issues during transportation.
  • To ensure that the package arrives safely at its destination, there are also packages that allow for an accurate identification and control system.

In addition to these suggestions, the European Union has established regulations to guarantee the safe transport of goods.

Directive 2014/47/EU aims to reduce road accidents, which mostly result from poorly secured cargo.

This regulation, which has a great significance for businesses that require the transportation of goods, also references the EUMOS 40509-2012 testing method to minimize risks during transportation and prevent transport damages of loads.

This is a dynamic package testing method that guarantees the safety and rigidity of the load when faced with horizontal accelerations and decelerations such as those that take place during road transportation.

Related article: Maximize cargo securing during transport with EUMOS 40509

How to protect packaging

How to protect packages and avoid a damaged load

In order to prevent damages during transportation, it is paramount to optimize the product + packaging system.

Package tests reproduce the hazards experienced by loads throughout the distribution cycle, allowing the real conditions to which the goods will be subjected to be anticipated.

The most common package tests to protect the load

By performing various package tests, it is possible to design packaging solutions that prevent damages during transportation.

  • On one hand, you may carry out tests to study how materials behave in relation to compression, traction and cushioning, as well thoroughly understand the package and characterize it.
  • One the other hand, you can study how the load reacts to static compression, as well as perform the creep test, which lets you know how a material performs under static conditions.
  • There are also fragility tests, which measure the resistance of products that are particularly delicate.
  • Additionally, transport simulation tests reproduce usual situations that take place during distribution (shock, drops, vibrations…) in order to prevent hazards and find solutions.

Among the most novel tests you can find those that are performed using vertical vibration and pitch and roll machines – a technology patented by Safe Load Testing Technologies that allows for a high level of precision.

  • These tests can be also performed in environmental chambers that anticipate the behavior of the load and its packaging in situations that are similar to those of the distribution cycle.

Advantages of packaging testing to prevent transport damages of loads

Packaging testing is vital to prevent damages during transportation and offers many advantages.

  • It allows for the right packaging to be designed and chosen, optimizing costs and reducing losses during the distribution cycle. This prevents under-packaging, which leads to economic costs or a bad company image, as well as over-packaging, which is an unnecessary cost for the company.

With the right packaging, you will accomplish satisfactory deliveries that earn the loyalty of your customers.

By performing package tests you can avoid using excessive or unnecessary packaging material, which does not only lead to higher costs, but also to a higher environmental impact.

Nowadays, with the prevalence of online shopping, it is vital to have the ability for packages to arrive in prime condition to their destinations, fulfilling customer expectations.

For a successful transportation of goods that prevents transport damages of loads , controlling and planning the distribution cycle will be paramount.

The success of these processes will depend on the joint efforts of experts that know the product to be transported, the chosen distribution route and the type of transport, among others.

At Safe Load Testing Technologies we can help you avoid damages during transportation. We have the most cutting-edge technology and a track record of 21 years in the research & development of new methods and equipment to develop and optimize packages for distribution.

Our machines let you perform unique and precise package tests, in addition to those outlined in the various regulations.

Get in touch with us and we will help you find the right machines for you to prevent transport damages of loads  and the risks involved in the distribution process.