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Flatbed Freight

Updated on November 4, 2010

First of all, I bet you're wondering just exactly what flatbed freight is. Well, that's why this hub pages exists, in order to tell you and bring some more out of the ordinary information into your life!

If you even need to transport a large item that would not be suitable for a standard truck or semi trailer, perhaps if it is too large, long or heavy then you will need the services of a flatbed freight company that specializes in this kind of transportation.While not everybody is going to need this type of service, there are always people who will.

So its on their behalf that its only fair to take a closer look at exactly what flatbed freight is and how it is transported and why it even needs to be moved from one place to another.

The Need for Flatbed Freight Transport

There is certainly a need for flatbed freight transportation in several circumstances where standard trucking services are simply not suitable for several reasons. Here are some of the reasons why certain types of load require a flatbed truck to transport them.


The physical size of a load is one of the most common factors and this can include extremely long loads, or tall loads which would not fit into a standard truck or semi trailer.


The weight of a load is another factor and while many semi trailers can handle very heavy loads, the types of load that are best suited to a flatbed truck generally exceed what a standard semi truck is safely capable of hauling.


The ability to load and unload a truck is probably the one overriding factor that completely rules out any other form of truck for the transportation of certain loads. Where a load can only be loaded or unloaded using an overhead crane, a truck's load space cannot be covered. Some loads simply cannot be loaded by forklift truck, especially very long and heavy loads.

Suitable Loads for Flatbed Freight Trucks

Here are some of the types of loads that are well suited to transportation via flatbed freight truck and are indeed not so well suited to any other form of road transportation method.

Heavy Machinery Transportation

Heavy machinery such as constructional diggers, cranes and backhoes all need to be transported from their depot or warehouse storage facility to the construction site. While backhoes and some constructional digging machines can travel by road under their own steam, this are not a suitable situation for longer journeys especially along highways. As this type of vehicle will not fit into a standard semi trailer truck, a flatbed truck is the preferred method of transporting this type of large machinery to and from the construction site.

Transportation of Construction Materials

Some construction materials are far too heavy to be loaded onto standard semi trucks and their loading method, which is usually by crane, is of no use in the case of an enclosed trailer as it has to load from above. A flatbed freight truck is the perfect vehicle for transporting heavy pallet loads of bricks, concrete blocks, cinder blocks, bags of cement or plaster and other very heavy loads.

Transportation of Drainage Pipes

Drainage pipes come in very long sections and need to be transported on flatbed trucks as their loading and unloading method is via crane from above. The length of some drainage pipes is too long for a standard semi truck's trailer in any case.

Transportation of Constructional Steel

Constructional steel, or rebar, can come in very long lengths and is usually tied together in large bundles which are too heavy for manually loading and unloading into a regular truck. So cranes must be used necessitating the use of a flatbed freight truck to take on the job of haulage.

Constructional Steel Girders Transportation

As with constructional rebar, the long steel girders used in constructing tall buildings can only be conveniently transported on flatbed freight trucks.

Transportation of Military Vehicles

Military vehicles that are not suitable to be driven on roads, such as tanks or other heavy armoured vehicles that run on tracks need to be transported from place to place using a flatbed truck or flatbed trailer.

As you can see, these are the types of load that can generally only be transported using a flatbed freight truck designed to move very heavy, long or tall loads safely and to provide the necessary platform for ease of loading and unloading using an overhead crane or similar lifting device.

So now you know what flatbed freight is all about and you can add that to your growing itinerary of information gained from Hub Pages!


Submit a Comment

  • Authorite profile image

    Authorite 8 years ago from UK

    I'm glad you liked it. Why mess around transporting something as mundane as a stack of bricks when you can drive a real live tank through the streets!

  • Dan Scraper profile image

    Dan Scraper 8 years ago

    Interesting topic to cover, I guess not too many folks think about flatbed trucks outside the construction industry. Nice photo of the tank man!