In the transportation industry, the term load is defined as a quantity of
material assembled and packed as a shipping unit. Generally, packages are
classified into three load types based on the nature of the contents, how well
the packaging protects it, and the strength of the mailing container.
Easy loads include moderate-density items that can
completely fill the mailing container or be packed in
interior receptacles. Easy loads are not readily damaged
by shock, compression, or puncture during handling or
mail processing. They do not shift or move within the
container, and they usually do not endanger other
Average loads include moderately concentrated items that usually provide
partial support to all surfaces of the mailing container. Often, the item can be
damaged if the package is compressed.
Average loads can be placed directly into a
container or into separate interior containers.
Nesting items within partitions or separate paperboard
boxes can stabilize an average load and prevent damage
to the container and the items.
The items in difficult loads usually need additional protection against shock,
puncture, or distortion during handling or mail
processing. Fragile objects, delicate instruments,
high-density items, and small bulk items are
considered difficult loads. Paper boxes, paper
or plastic bags, or wraps of any kind cannot
support difficult loads and are not acceptable
containers for such items.