When was the last time your driving skills were tested?
Have you ever towed a trailer of any kind?
Have you ever towed anything that weighs more than 750kgs?
Have you ever had to reverse a trailer?
Most of us get our licence around 17 years of age and can go a lifetime without being ever tested again.
There is no doubt that driving experience does increase our driving confidence and proficiency however, introducing a new element such as towing a caravan, camper or boat even with years ‘behind the wheel’ should not be taken lightly. Coupled with various ailments, medical conditions and reduced mobility, flexibility and movement that may affect us as we age, we must be aware of our safety (and other road users) as we travel.
There is nearly always one ‘know it all’ at the shows ‘Stay on Track Outback’ attends and the team tries hard to convince them that confidence is one thing, skill is another. As the famous proverb states we are “never too old to learn”. Towing anything behind your vehicle not only adds length and weight but will affect the handling. Consider upskilling – take a towing and/or 4WD course, join a caravanning or 4WD club and if nothing else, PRACTISE!
Some suggestions for practising with your new trailer (ie. van, camper, motorhome or other):
Many of the crashes involving caravans (etc) occur within the first two weeks of leaving home and are the result of a ‘sway up’ in the trailer. These crashes may be avoided by practising and being confident in your skills before heading outback where there will be hazards you may not be used to.
DON’T BE APATHETIC:
THE ONUS IS ON YOU TO ENSURE THAT YOU AS THE DRIVER CAN HANDLE YOUR VEHICLE AND TRAILER.
YOUR LIFE AND THOSE OF OTHERS IS IN YOUR HANDS!