Skip to main content
King County logo


Natural Resources and Parks
Public Affairs

National ‘Secure Your Load Day’ campaign urges everyone in King County to do their part, improve road safety


June 6 is “Secure Your Load Day,” and King County encourages everyone to properly secure their loads to help save lives, keep roadways safe and clean, and avoid fees.


In recognition of “Secure Your Load Day” on June 6, King County’s Solid Waste Division encourages all residents to take the time and use basic supplies, such as ropes, netting, and straps to properly secure their loads. A load is secure when nothing can slide, shift, or fall onto the roadway or become airborne. 

“Taking a few minutes to properly secure your load is one of the easiest things we can all do to keep our roadways safe and prevent litter,” said King County Solid Waste Division Director Pat McLaughlin. “We strictly enforce the state law that requires us to charge a fee to anyone who arrives at one of our disposal facilities with an unsecured load.”

"I have personally witnessed and been behind loads that were not secured properly and resulted in injuries to innocent drivers, passengers and pedestrians," said King County Sheriff Mitzi Johanknecht.

"Forgetting to tie down a boat on a trailer after a fun day on the water or the transport of a mattress and box spring on top of a compact vehicle can end in tragedy.  Take the extra time to fully cover and secure your load.  If you see a dangerous or unsecured load, please call 911 immediately. Law enforcement needs your help to keep everyone in our communities safe. We are all members of the public safety team!"

Arriving at a King County solid waste facility with an improperly secured load could result in a $25 fee that will be assessed in addition to any regular disposal or recycling fees. If a police officer finds you transporting an unsecured load, you can receive a $228 fine and even greater penalties, including jail time, if an unsecured item falls from your vehicle and injures someone. 

“Secure Your Load Day” is a national effort championed by King County resident Robin Abel, whose daughter was severely injured in 2004 when unsecured material from a pickup truck bed crashed into her car while the vehicles were traveling down the highway. 

Since then, Abel has worked to remind people that unsecured loads and road debris are not freak accidents, but rather frequent incidents that can be prevented with a few simple steps and affordable equipment. 

Tips to ensure a safe trip while hauling items include: 

 Placing lighter items below heavier items to keep them in place. Secure the heavy items to the vehicle.

 Tying down items using rope, netting, straps, or chains. Fasten large items directly to the vehicle.

 Adding extra protection by covering the entire load with a tarp or netting. Make sure any covering is securely tied down.

  Ensuring your vehicles and trailers aren’t overloaded.

More information is available at

Secure Your Load:

Doug Williams, 206-477-4543

About the King County Solid Waste Division
The Solid Waste Division provides environmentally responsible solid waste transfer and disposal services in King County. The division operates eight transfer stations, two rural drop boxes, and the Cedar Hills Regional Landfill – the only operational landfill in the county. Our stakeholders include residents and business owners in unincorporated King County and 37 cities throughout the county. We work closely with our stakeholders to continue our national leadership in waste prevention, resource recovery, and waste disposal.