On June 6th, we remember Matthew Reif, an Arizona man who died in 2006 when a piece of metal flew off a truck and hit his car. His tragic death inspired National Secure Your Load Day, a campaign to prevent accidents and litter caused by unsecured loads on our highways.
Unsecured loads are a serious threat to our safety and our environment. AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reports that they cause about 51,000 crashes, 125 deaths and 10,000 injuries every year in the U.S. They also dump over 1 billion pieces of trash on our roads, polluting our community and our planet.
That’s why Pick It Up – Toss No Mas and the Southwest Solid Waste Authority have released a new video to remind you to “Cover Your Load Before You Hit the Road!” Whether you’re carrying trash, furniture or appliances, yard or construction waste, make sure it’s covered and tied down securely. It’s not only the law, it’s also the smart thing to do.
Check out the video below and watch a demonstration of how to properly cover your load.
Carolina Grijalva, General Manager with the Southwest Solid Waste Authority, offers some simple tips on how to properly secure your load:
- Use ratchet straps, netting, or rope (if you know how to tie proper knots) to hold down large items that could fall off your vehicle.
- Place light items such as cardboard boxes, styrofoam or yard waste under larger items to prevent them from flying out. Put heavier items near the front of the vehicle with lighter items near the rear for safety.
- Don’t overload your vehicle.
- Cover your load with a plastic or canvas tarp or netting to keep everything in place.
- Check your load before you leave and make sure nothing can fall, slide or shift onto the road or become airborne.
Given the problem of unsecured loads, the Southwest Solid Waste Authority charges $5 for arriving at the Main Landfill with an unsecured load. Additionally, you could face a $300 fine for littering on a New Mexico state highway.
Don’t let your load become a road hazard. Cover your load before you hit the road to keep our roads safe and clean!