Originally Posted by John Linck
If the trailer is a tight squeeze in a container how would you protect it from rattling around inside during storms, crane mishaps, etc? How carefully and securely do they tie them down? Seems even the flex in the trailer suspension would allow bumping against the container wall. Do they tie them down on solid blocks? Maybe you could use about 500 cans of spray foam or 5000 Beanie Babies to sell in NZ as padding?
Normal practise is when loading a car into a container is to put wooden blocks that run the full width of the container down in front & behind the vehicles tires
. Then they use the vehicles tow hooks and run straps through them and tie them down to D rings located on the inside of the container and ratchet to tighten it down. On RoRo ships they also tie the cars down to rings on the deck using the tow points on the car and tighten down the nylon slings with a ratchet.
As we all know the frames on most of our trailers or the fiberglass would not take kindly to be secured in the above fashion.
As a trailer is taller than a car if it was loaded into a container it would need protection between the outside walls of the trailer and the container, as the container will rock side to side both when being loaded/unloaded as well as while at sea. We communally used airbags inside containers but with the fiberglass trailer one would need to be carefull not to over inflate & put to much pressure on the fiberglass. Bottom line is ships roll side to side while at sea and the weather will determine just how much side to side roll you have. Have eaten more than one meal on a large deep sea vessel while sitting on the floor in a hallway with my back against the wall and my feet braced on the other in order to keep from sliding around while eating, as using the dinning room table is impossible!
RoRo ships will have some fairly large flat container beds with wheels under them so they can pull it on and off the ship that they use for large pieces of non conforming cargos as well as boats, which are normally loaded into custom built cradle first that is used as the tie down. They could use the same for a trailer but again how they secure the fiberglass trailer to the flat deck container would be my biggest concern.
If it were my trailer going onto a ship - ether on a container ship or a RoRo I would want to make sure I had come to an agreement with the company doing the loading of the trailer as to what points of the trailer they were going to use to secure it and what points of the trailer could not be used for securing it. Would also ask to be present when they did the actual loading to make sure they actually followed those instructions.
1st picture is how cars are secured on the deck of a RoRo ship. Second photo is a fairly typical way of securing a car in a standard container. Third photo is a specialized flat deck with wheels used on RoRo ships for odd ball cargo and often boats.