Load Covering Solutions And The Evolution Of The Rolling Tarp System

Steve Pollock
September 2021

BUFFALO, NY…. Load Covering Solutions (LCS) was founded in 1979 in Ontario, Canada as A-Kit Industries.  They were a specialized manufacturer making side kits, which were quickly replacing standard flat tarping for flatbedders.  The company transformed the Canadian market through the 1980s from flat tarps to iconic “Covered Wagons” utilizing lightweight but H.D. aluminum side post, cross bows, a variety of panels, and fitted tarps.  From the lowest of loads to van freight, A-Kit customized side kits ranging In height from 2 ft. to 8 ft.  This innovation allowed an added measure of safety for drivers while allowing loads to be covered more quickly and thoroughly than conventional tarping.  Side kits are still running up and  down our North American highways today.

It wasn’t long before A-Kit Industries recognized the need for dump haulers to have a more efficient method of tarping and developed a ground level crank operated side-to-side roll tarp system.

By the late 80s and early 90s, A-Kit Industries saw a continuing demand for more versatility in flatbed tarping. Always maintaining innovation, A-Kit Industries developed and introduced the Rolling Tarp System to Canadian flatbed haulers.

Seeing the vast market for flatbed Load Covering Products in the USA, in 2010 A-Kit opened an office in Buffalo, New York, simultaneously changing their name to Load Covering Solutions (LCS) to better reflect their expanding product portfolio, their ability and willingness to customize their product to meet the needs of the customer, and the ongoing innovation in aerodynamics.

As diesel prices continued to climb, the trucking industry was searching for any and all solutions to save fuel. The first step was to add aerodynamics and other fuel saving features to the power unit.  At the time, it was believed that there was little to nothing that could be done to enhance the aerodynamics of the flatbed trailer.  LCS teamed up with one of the leading developers of aerodynamic products and in 2014 introduced their Windmaster Series of aerodynamic rolling tarp systems. By adding a Nose Fairing and streamlining the rolling tarp system to be more aerodynamic, LCS was able to provide customers with wind drag reductions of 5-12%, depending on application.  All LCS Windmaster Systems are CFD tested in comparison to a flat front aluminum bulkhead 100” high at 65 mph. LCS offers 4 models of the Windmaster Aerodynamic Rolling Tarp System: Windmaster Original, SMARTLOOK, GR8LOOK, and the Round Top Windmaster Bullet.

Today Load Covering Solutions is the only manufacturer to offer flat top and round top Windmaster aerodynamic rolling tarp systems.  Although LCS is not the largest producer of rolling tarp systems in North America, they offer the widest variety of specialized rolling tarp systems for many applications.  The company engineers custom design over-dimensional systems for the U.S. Government, Aviation & Space Exploration Transportation requirements, which can reach beyond 80 ft. in length and 6 ft. in height. LCS has little limitations for what they are confident in designing, making them 1st choice in these markets. NLCS likewise undertook the development of the non-semi-trailer load covering systems under the branding LCT-Load Covering Trailers and makes multiple models of systems for fender, deckover, tilt, and gooseneck trailers ranging from 10 ft – 45 ft. to be pulled behind 1500-5500 series trucks.

Load Covering Solutions offers a wide range of mechanized tarp systems beyond flatbeds for agricultural, aggregate, and waste, along with cargo control accessories and equipment such as boxes, bulkheads, and headache racks.

While 2020 was a year none of us will forget, Load Covering Solutions was able to maintain manufacturing capacity throughout the Covid 19 Pandemic, as well as into 2021.  The company is excited about the upcoming Mid-America Trucking Show in March 2022 and invite drivers to visit their booth to see some of the innovative products LCS has to offer.  To learn more, visit www.loadcovering.com or call 716-514-6419.