2020 Georgia Code
Title 40 - Motor Vehicles and Traffic
Chapter 6 - Uniform Rules of the Road
Article 11 - Miscellaneous Provisions
§ 40-6-248.1. Securing and Covering Loads on Vehicles

Universal Citation: GA Code § 40-6-248.1 (2020)
  1. As used in this Code section, the term "litter" has the meaning provided by paragraph (1) of Code Section 16-7-42.
    1. Create a safety hazard; or
    2. Deposit litter on public or private property while such vehicle is on a public road.

      However, this Code section shall not prohibit the necessary spreading of any substance in public road maintenance or construction operations.

  2. No person shall operate or load for operation, on any public road, any vehicle with any load unless such load and any covering thereon is securely fastened so as to prevent such covering or load from:
    1. Becoming loose, detached, or in any manner becoming a hazard to other users of the public road; or
    2. Depositing litter on public or private property while such vehicle is on a public road.
  3. No motor carrier shall allow a commercial motor vehicle to be driven and no person shall operate a commercial motor vehicle with a load that is not secure. Loads shall be secured as required by state and federal law, rule, and regulation. As used in this subsection, the term "load" shall include loads consisting of liquids and gases as well as solid materials.
  4. Nothing in this Code section nor any regulations based thereon shall conflict with federal, Department of Public Safety, or Board of Public Safety regulations applying to the securing of loads on motor vehicles.
  5. The provisions of paragraph (2) of subsection (a) and paragraph (2) of subsection (b) of this Code section and regulations based thereon shall not apply to organic debris that escapes during the transportation of silage from field or farm to storage and storage to feedlot or during the transportation of agricultural or farm products or silvicultural products from farm or forest to a processing plant or point of sale or use.

(a.1)No vehicle shall be driven or moved on any public road unless such vehicle is constructed or loaded or covered so as to prevent any of its load from dropping, escaping, or shifting in such a manner as to:

(Code 1933, § 95A-955, enacted by Ga. L. 1973, p. 947, § 1; Ga. L. 1981, p. 705, § 1; Ga. L. 2002, p. 1270, § 1; Code 1981, §32-6-21; Code 1981, §40-6-248.1, as redesignated by Ga. L. 2006, p. 275, § 3-9/HB 1320; Ga. L. 2012, p. 580, § 10/HB 865; Ga. L. 2013, p. 141, § 40/HB 79; Ga. L. 2013, p. 838, § 18/HB 323.)

Cross references.

- Operating vehicle without adequately securing load, § 40-6-254.

Prohibition against dragging or sliding of vehicles or loads on road surfaces, § 40-8-3.

Code Commission notes.

- Pursuant to Code Section 28-9-5, in 2012, a comma that was inadvertently deleted was inserted following "federal" in subsection (c) (now (d)).

Editor's notes.

- Ga. L. 2006, p. 275, § 1-1/HB 1320, not codified by the General Assembly, provides: "This Act shall be known and may be cited as the 'Comprehensive Litter Prevention and Abatement Act of 2006'."

Ga. L. 2006, p. 275, § 5-1/HB 1320, not codified by the General Assembly, provides that the Act shall become effective April 21, 2006, for purposes of adopting local ordinances to become effective on or after July 1, 2006.

Ga. L. 2006, p. 275, § 3-9/HB 1320, effective July 1, 2006, redesignated former Code Section 32-6-21 as present Code Section 40-6-248.1.

Ga. L. 2013, p. 838, § 20/HB 323, not codified by the General Assembly, provides, in part: "This Act shall become effective on July 1, 2013, and shall apply to violations committed on or after such date".


Driving with an unsecured load is a strict liability offense, and proof of mens rea or guilty knowledge is unnecessary to support a conviction. Semones v. State, 200 Ga. App. 3, 406 S.E.2d 483, cert. denied, 200 Ga. App. 897, 406 S.E.2d 483, cert. vacated, 261 Ga. 744, 414 S.E.2d 463 (1991).

Probable cause for stop.

- Nothing showed error in the district court's denial of the defendants' motion to suppress since the district court found probable cause to stop and search the second defendant's truck for drug proceeds or, alternatively, probable cause under O.C.G.A. § 40-6-248.1 for carrying an unsecured load, and that after the stop, valid consent was given. United States v. Baza, F.3d (11th Cir. June 17, 2010)(Unpublished).

What acts constitute loading process for insurance purposes.

- Logger's act of throwing a metal cable across a load of logs on a truck to secure the logs prior to transportation on a public road constituted a part of the loading process for insurance purposes and was not an act separate therefrom. Crosby v. Georgia Cas. & Sur. Co., 173 Ga. App. 644, 327 S.E.2d 505 (1985).


Traffic regulation.

- This section qualifies as a statute relating to traffic upon the public roads, streets and highways, violation of which is punishable as a misdemeanor offense. 1979 Op. Att'y Gen. No. U79-14 (see O.C.G.A. § 32-6-21; now O.C.G.A. § 40-6-248.1).

Department of Transportation not entitled to enforcement proceeds.

- Department of Transportation is not entitled to any portion of resulting fine or forfeiture from enforcement of this section. 1973 Op. Att'y Gen. No. 73-149 (see O.C.G.A. § 32-6-21; now O.C.G.A. § 40-6-248.1).


Am. Jur. 2d.

- 13 Am. Jur. 2d, Carriers, §§ 34, 86. 39 Am. Jur. 2d, Highways, Streets, and Bridges, § 235 et seq.


- 40 C.J.S., Highways, §§ 394 et seq.

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