How Safe Stack Systems are Changing Shipping

safe stack systems

Whenever freight is shipped from one location to another, a risk of damage exists. Goods being shipped tend to shift around a bit during the trip due to a variety of factors and well, basic physics!

Despite shippers’ best efforts to secure their freight, this is an ever-looming issue logistics professionals need to consider. 

In recent years, a solution has emerged: Safe Stack systems.

This system is a method carriers can use when loading freight and cargo into trailers. Freight loaded using the Safe Stack method reaches its destination with a much more minimized risk of damage.

In this blog post, we’ll dive into safe stack systems and explain how it all works. Additionally, we are going to talk about why leading freight carriers are beginning to integrate this technique into their current FLT or LTL shipping platforms. 

So, without further ado, let's get to stacking!


Safe Stack Systems Implementation

The main idea behind the Safe Stack system is that it allows carriers to load freight in such a way so as to minimize or outright prevent damage from occurring during transit. 

This is probably needless to say, but customers want their goods to arrive undamaged and in one piece. In fact, many customers are even willing to overlook shipping delays so long as their goods arrive undamaged. For this reason, the Safe Stack system has become a crucial supply chain component for many shippers.

By using this method, shippers typically receive fewer customer damage claims, save more money, reduce shrink, and provide a better experience for their customers. Here is the process for loading freight using the Safe Stack System:


  • Carrier reviews freight
  • The initial pallets and skids are loaded onto the trailer and secured
  • Using Safe Stack loading beams, the cargo load team builds a deck on top of the pallets and previously loaded skids.
  • These plywood sheet covered beams provide additional cargo a flat surface for extra security.
  • Next, the second round of cargo (preferably heavier equipment such as solid supplies or machines) is placed behind the first to reduce movement further by providing forward-facing cargo with more support.
  • Skids or pallets get loaded onto the newly built deck - as close to the top of the trailer as possible.
  • This process repeats for each layer of skids and pallets, going all the way to the tail of the trailer. Each layer gets shrink-wrapped and secured to the trailer walls or deck with straps.


Safe Stack Systems: Pros & Cons

Safe Stack Systems provide a number of benefits for shippers and customers alike.

Obviously, by using the Safe Stack system, it becomes much more likely that shipments arrive at their destination in perfect condition. With fewer customers receiving damaged shipments, shippers are able to save money on damaged freight claims. 

Not only does it save shippers save money in that regard, but it also gives customers a better experience. And when you can impress your customers with flawless shipments, you increase the chances of repeat business.

Here are a few of the biggest benefits of the Safe Stack System:


  • Reduces shrink, freight damage claims, and replacements
  • Improves the overall customer experience
  • Handling and moving the goods is easier due to the stacking arrangement


While there are a number of benefits to using the Safe Stack system, there also are some drawbacks to consider.

Here are a few of the more prominent cons of the Safe Stack system:


  • As the Safe Stack system requires cargo to be properly loaded onto pallets and skids, it undoubtedly requires more time, money, people, and resources.
  • Freight loading crews and drivers require additional training and supplies. Specific training will help these workers learn how to solve problems and improvise as needed.


Despite these drawbacks of additional time, resources, money, training, and supplies, these are investments. Especially when one considers the significant benefits that Safe Stack systems provide. 


Final Thoughts

From improving the customer’s experience to lowering overall costs by ensuring damage-free shipping, the benefits of this system vastly outweigh the drawbacks. 

Although the overall process is fairly straightforward and works to fully secure cargo, there are always variables to consider. Thus, the loading process should be customized for every new load.

Looking to learn a bit more about how you can start implementing the Safe Stack system? Reach out to the logistics experts here at Redwood Logistics today!