What is flat truck?

A flatbed truck, also known as a flatbed lorry in British English, is a type of truck with a flat, open platform for cargo instead of an enclosed box. This design allows for easy loading and unloading of various goods, particularly those that are:

  • Heavy: Flatbeds are suitable for transporting heavy objects like machinery, building materials, and large equipment due to their sturdy construction.
  • Oversized: The open bed can accommodate cargo that wouldn’t fit inside an enclosed truck, such as long pipes, lumber, or vehicles.
  • Irregularly shaped: Odd-shaped objects that wouldn’t fit in a box can be securely strapped to a flatbed.

While offering these advantages, flatbeds also have limitations:

  • Exposed to elements: Since they lack an enclosure, the cargo is vulnerable to weather conditions like rain, sun, and wind.
  • Security concerns: The open design makes the cargo more susceptible to theft or damage compared to enclosed trucks.

To address these limitations, flatbeds often come with features like:

  • Low sides: Some flatbeds have low walls that can be folded down to facilitate loading and unloading.
  • Stake pockets: These are indentations on the bed where wooden stakes can be inserted to create temporary sides for the cargo.
  • Tarping: Securing a tarp over the cargo can protect it from the elements.
  • Tie-downs: These are straps or chains used to secure the cargo to the bed of the truck.

Flatbed trucks are a versatile and essential part of the transportation industry, playing a crucial role in hauling various goods across short and long distances.