How Flatbed Trucking Companies Operate at DFW Airport

How Flatbed Trucking Companies Operate at DFW Airport
Image Source: Freepik, Photo by fanjianhua 

DFW Airport is one of the biggest cargo hubs in the country. Every day, hundreds of trucks drive in and out transporting all kinds of goods ranging from fresh seafood to aircraft engines. Of all the trucks, flatbed trailers play an integral role in keeping things moving. Unlike dry van trailers, flatbeds allow for the transportation of odd-sized loads that don’t fit neatly into a box. Whether it’s giant wind turbine blades or the wings of a Boeing 747, flatbeds can haul it. The process of safely loading, securing, and driving these oversized items in and out of the airport for DFW airport cargo pickup is no easy task. It requires coordination between dispatchers, drivers, airport cargo teams, and sometimes even police escorts when roads need to be temporarily closed. This article will provide an inside look into the world of flatbed trucking companies operating at DFW and how they carefully orchestrate the pickup and delivery of some of the most unusual and critical cargo loads that fly in and out of this bustling airport. 

Main Benefits of Using Flatbed Trucks for DFW Cargo

One of the major benefits of using flatbed trucks for hauling cargo in and out of DFW is the sheer flexibility they provide. Unlike box trailers or dry vans, flatbeds can accommodate loads of vastly different shapes and sizes that don’t fit neatly into an enclosed space. This makes them ideal for transporting bulky and odd-sized airplane parts, wings, and other specialized machinery that airlines and manufacturers require. The flatbed company can also haul extremely heavy equipment like aircraft engines and fuselages that would exceed weight restrictions in traditional semi-trucks. The open access of the flat platform allows for quick loading and offloading too, saving time compared to a van where items must be maneuvered in and out of a confined space. When airlines need to move massive cargo swiftly and safely, they know they can rely on the unique benefits offered by flatbed trucks and flatbed companies.

Typical Flatbed Loads at DFW

You never know what you might see strapped to a flatbed trailer heading in or out of DFW Airport. Aircraft engines, wings, and fuselages being transported between Boeing and Airbus manufacturing facilities are common sights. Massive loads of ground service equipment like baggage carts, belt loaders, and aircraft tugs frequently need hauling as well. For the many construction projects expanding DFW’s terminals and runways, flatbeds carry heavy machinery like bulldozers, cranes, graders, and more. Large commercial shipments that pass through Dallas also depend on flatbeds, from combines and tractors heading to farms to giant wind turbine blades going to wind farms. And oversized items that exceed width, height, or weight restrictions for dry van shipping can only be transported via flatbed. From plane parts to construction materials, flatbeds keep DFW’s most unusual and oversized cargo loads moving efficiently.

Flatbed Pickup and Dropoff Procedures at DFW

To pick up or drop off cargo at DFW Airport, flatbed trucks must access the cargo areas through secured entrances and undergo screening procedures. Once cleared, drivers check in at the cargo offices and present paperwork listing the contents and weight of their loads. Airport personnel then escort the flatbeds to the proper loading docks. The cargo is carefully secured onto the flatbeds using chains, straps, and ratchet tie-down systems. Drivers obtain final weight tickets after loading to avoid overweight violations. For pickups, the process is reversed—flatbeds back up to the docks, and airport workers efficiently offload the cargo. Final paperwork is signed by the driver before departing the airport grounds. For oversized loads, special procedures apply, potentially involving route surveys, pilot cars, permits, and coordinating with local police to temporarily close roads. Companies like RGN Trucking have years of experience navigating DFW’s flatbed pickup and dropoff processes to ensure cargo is transported safely and efficiently.

Common Challenges and Safety Standards

Successfully moving cargo in and out of DFW Airport with flatbed trucks comes with unique challenges that require experienced drivers. The tight spaces make maneuvering extremely difficult, requiring expertise and skill. Airport restrictions on size and weight must be carefully followed to avoid violations. Securing irregularly shaped loads like giant aircraft wings or fuselages also poses difficulties that regular cargo does not. Strict safety standards regulate proper load balancing, approved tie-down methods, and the flagging of overhangs and protrusions. For aircraft parts, weight distribution is critical – pilots provide specific center-of-gravity specifications that drivers must comply with. Windy conditions around the runways further impact load securing and driving. Additional protocols are followed for nighttime driving and standards for vehicle lighting. Redundant inspections are completed given the high value of many aircraft components. Meeting these challenges safely is only possible through rigorous training, strict adherence to protocols, extensive experience moving specialized loads, and effective communication between drivers, dispatchers, airport loadmasters, and ground crews.


To sum it up, flatbed trucks play a vital role in keeping aircraft and parts moving in and out of DFW Airport efficiently thanks to their unique capabilities for hauling oversized and irregular cargo. From massive airplane components to bulky ground equipment, flatbed trucks transport a diverse range of airport cargo while complying with specialized procedures and safety standards. As DFW continues expanding and increasing cargo volumes, demand will grow for qualified flatbed drivers with the skills and experience to safely handle these complex loads. Texas freight carriers provide the extensive training necessary for flatbed drivers to excel in the unique environment of an active airport.

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of The World Financial Review.