Please note that each state and territory has its’ own legislative requirements, so checks should be made with the local relevant departments. In general, these vehicle standard requirements are not new and have been consistent across most States and Territories for some years.
Trailers that do not exceed 750kg GTM with a single axle – do not require any brakes.
Trailers 750kg – 4500kg ATM must be fitted with an efficient brake system that complies with ADR 38/-.- Trailers 2000kg GTM – brakes operating on all wheels
Must be marked in accordance with relevant Australian Standard.
Must prevent the trailer’s drawbar hitting the ground if the trailer is detached from the towing vehicle and be properly connected to the tow bar with attachments capable of withstanding the specified breaking load of each chain.
A rear vision mirror or mirrors must be fitted to a motor vehicle so that a driver of the vehicle can clearly see by reflection the road behind the vehicle and any following or overtaking vehicle (s.24, TORUM (Road Rules) Reg 2009). A motor vehicle with a GVM not over 3.5t must be fitted with at least one rear vision mirror on the right side of the vehicle and at least one rear vision mirror on the left side of the vehicle or inside the vehicle (NB. there are some exceptions – see s.24). With respect to caravans, the driver must be able to clearly see right down the sides of their vehicle and van to the road behind.
Queensland has no specific trailer speed limits for towing (GCM less than 4.5T) – posted speed limits apply. Instead, it is recommended that drivers travel at a speed that is suitable to the prevailing conditions on the open road.
*Please note that some other states do have speed restrictions for towing*
Must drive a sufficient distance behind a vehicle travelling in front so, if necessary, the driver can stop safely to avoid a collision (s.126 TORUM (Road Rules) Reg 2009). The driver of a long vehicle (more than 7.5m long) must drive at least 60m behind another long vehicle travelling in front – unless on multi-lane road or on road in a built-up area or overtaking (s.127 TORUM (Road Rules) Reg 2009).
As a rule of thumb – a vehicle towing a trailer or caravan should allow two seconds, plus one second for each 3 metres of trailer.
Section 5 of the Transport Operations (Road Use Management – Vehicle Standards and Safety) Regulation 2010 (Qld) provides offence provisions if vehicles do not comply with vehicle standards (Fines are $113 (1 pt) for vehicles not fitted or non-compliant and up to $227 (3 pts) for vehicles with parts/equipment not in safe condition).