Load Restraint Guide 1994 (First Edition)

Tenders were called (and then re-called) in 1991 for this project. Richard Larsen (by then an independent consulting engineer and load restraint SMExpert) was finally awarded the contract.

The contract included road tests of loaded vehicles at Mt Cotton Driver Training Centre and extensive industry consultation.

Following the testing, Loadsafe’s SMExpert, Richard Larsen proposed the following unique set of Performance Standards:

  • Vehicle horizontal acceleration 0.8g forwards 0.5g sideways and 0.5g rearwards, based on some of the German VDI standards for Ladungssicherung (ref Acknowledgements LRG 2nd Ed page 4).

  • Vertical acceleration requirement of 0.2g relative to the vehicle.


These standards reduced the previous forward acceleration requirement from 1.0g to 0.8g.


Because the restraint on any load on a vehicle depends on the vehicle’s orientation and acceleration, it seemed logical to define the load restraint performance standards in relation to the vehicle, not the load, as in other world standards. Therefore the horizontal Standards were applied to the vehicle, not directly to the load. This allowed for future load restraint systems to be specifically engineered by taking into account the type of vehicle, the vehicle load structure, the load and its positioning.

The new Standards also allowed for some load movement under defined conditions.

The current European Standards (En12195) have additional sideways requirements (was 0.7g, now 0.6g) to be applied for the restraint of unstable loads. The Australian Load Restraint Guide Performance Standards effectively take this into account by subjecting the vehicle to the lateral acceleration, not the load. This has enabled Australian load restraint designers and certifiers to take into account the dynamic and inertial effects of the complete vehicle/load system using currently available computer software, with the opportunity for further innovation and refinement in the future.

The Load Restraint Guide was first published in 1994 and was the first such public document that clearly identified the difference between direct restraint and indirect restraint.

The majority of the Australian State and Territory jurisdictions subsequently called up these Performance Standards in their Regulations (as did the USA and Canada).

In the following years Loadsafe’s Richard Larsen carried out load restraint testing and training using a specially designed test truck which he drove to numerous mainland locations from Mt Isa to Melbourne.