Loading Guide for Intermodal Containers Moving to California and Nevada

loading map

Note: Due to Nevada loads being drayed from California, all loads destined for Nevada must follow the California Bridge Law.

Loading Containers

  • Containers are built much stronger than a standard trailer.
  • A container needs to be built tough to handle the stresses placed on it during its service life.
  • The average container and chassis combined weigh about 4000 pounds more than a trailer.
  • The additional weight combined with the California bridge law adds challenges for shippers and consignees in California.

Challenges – Guidelines

The commercial vehicle may not exceed 80,000 GVW, the axle weight restrictions are:

  • 34,000 on the drive tires
  • 34,000 on the tandems
  • 12,000 on the steer tires

When loading a container for California there are basic principles to remember.

  • Load heavier pallets in the nose followed by light pallets to lightest pallet.
  • Keep the product between the tandems and the nose of the container. The heavier the load the shorter you want it to be, for loads over 43,000 try to end the load between the 43’ and 45’ mark.
  • Loads are scaled at origin based on the legal requirements of the destination state.
  • For loads moving to California the tandems must be all the way forward (1st hole)

California Department of Transportation Truck Restriction Procedures

Combination vehicles coupled together, such as a truck tractor and semi-trailer or a truck tractor, semi-trailer and trailer, are limited to 65 feet, or 75 feet, or maybe unlimited depending on route. In addition, legal trucks in California must not exceed a kingpin-to-rear-axle (KPRA) length of 40 feet. Truck lengths and routes are discussed in detail in the Caltrans fact sheet Truck Route Classifications. kingpin-distance

 
  • The distance from the center of the king pin to the center of the rear axle cannot exceed 40’
  • When the Schneider container tandems are in the 1st pin setting (all the way forward) the center of the rear axle is 39’.8” from the center of the king pin.
  • Loads are scaled at origin to ensure they are legal for the destination state

Example Load

The colors denote the various weights and placement within the container. The heaviest product (blue)is loaded in the nose followed by the next lightest (yellow) and then (green) finalizing with the lightest.

example-load-01example-load-02example-load-03example-load-04

example-load-05

 

The load is balanced, the drive axles weight 33,519 and the tandem axle weighs 33,595. The tandems are configured for California (1st hole).

Load Diagram for Nineteen 48 x 40 Pallets @ 2200 Pounds Loaded Straight

load 19 pallets

 

load 19 pallets photo

 

 
 

Load Diagram for a Split Load of Nineteen 48 x 40 Pallets @ 2200 Pounds

split-load-19 pallets

 

load 19 pallets photo

 
 

Load Diagram for Twenty 48 x 40 Pallets @ 2000 Pounds Loaded Straight

load 20 pallets

 

load 20 pallets photo

 
 

Load Diagram for Twenty 48 x 40 Pallets @ 2000 Pounds Loaded Crossways

load-20 pallets-crossway

 

load-20 pallets-crossway-photo

 
 

Load Diagram for Twenty One 48 x 40 Pallets @ 2000 Pounds Loaded Straight

load 21 pallets

 

load 21 pallets photo

 
 

Load Diagram for Twenty Two 48 x 40 Pallets @ 1900 Pounds Loaded Straight

load 22 pallets

 

load 22 pallets photo

 
 

For customized loading diagrams or if you have questions regarding this material please contact Gary Jashinsky, Loading Services Manager, 920-592-6248

Published March 2011