Highways England has launched a campaign to encourage drivers to secure their load following a surge of items falling onto motorways.
A reported 40 beds, 96 chairs, 49 cushions and 163 mattresses fell off vehicles and onto English motorways, including 52 sofas and 17 tables, as found by Highways England traffic officers.
Highways England project manager Amelia Kirwan said: “If you’re buying or moving furniture this weekend, use proper straps that are strong enough for the job.
"Don’t risk losing your stuff, and causing other drivers to become delayed, injured or worse.
“Our traffic officers picked up around 600 items such as mattresses, sofas and chairs during a nine month period. So before you set off, check your load is secure and your view is clear of obstructions.”
Badly secured items that fall onto busy, high-speed roads are a danger that causes delays and even collisions. The average incident like this takes 20 minutes to clear up, often disrupting other road users.
Taking around 20 minutes to clear and causing delays, this domestic debris has caused the body to launch a campaign with a simple message: let’s all get home in one piece.
Research for Highways England, found that nearly 9 out of 10 cars observed did not have any method of securing heavy loads inside a vehicle.
If the driver stopped or changed direction suddenly, this creates a serious risk that a load can be thrown forward through the windscreen or hit vehicle occupants.
‘Let’s all get home in one piece’ is one of a number of Highways England safety warnings for drivers this bank holiday.