Help prevent accidents and keep debris off our roadways

Unsecure loads can be deadly, yet we still regularly see items flying out of the back of vehicles on roadways. Last year alone, the Washington State Patrol contacted 6,268 vehicles for failing to secure their load, and at least 170 collisions were caused by unsecure loads! Of those, 16 involved injuries.

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pickup carrying load covered with tarp

Tips to help you keep your load covered and secure

  • Lighter goes lower
  • Tie it down
  • Don’t overload
  • Always double-check

Before leaving home, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Would I feel safe if I were driving behind MY vehicle?
  2. Is the load secure on the top, back and sides?
  3. Is my load completely and securely covered?
  4. What would happen if I needed to swerve or stop suddenly?

Obey the law

  • You are required by law to cover the trash load you’re hauling. Washington State law includes a financial penalty and potential criminal charges if you are pulled over for failing to secure a load. Plus, the Clark County Uncovered Load Ordinance establishes a surcharge for uncovered loads of garbage and/or recyclables delivered to transfer stations. 
  • In Clark County, any load with visible waste will be subject to a surcharge at the transfer station, unless the waste is visible only through a secure covering or the waste is not capable of causing a litter problem.

What are the Clark County fines?

  • Vehicles of less than one-ton capacity will be issued a warning for the first violation. A $7.50 surcharge will be charged for any additional violations during a 12-month period.
  • Vehicles of one-ton capacity or greater will be issued a warning for the first violation. A $25 surcharge will be charged for the second violation and $100 surcharge will be charged for any additional violations during a 12-month period.