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We are going to the south of France via Bilboa and am wondering about marker boards for rigs over 12m. I think I will need them but was wondering if I could attach the marker board to the bike rack on the back of our van?

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This link from last year could be useful to you.

Fitting Marker Boards

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Not allowed in France, compulsory in Spain (although I don't bother).

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I am pretty sure that the marker boards you are asking about must be actually attached TO the caravan itself. If you look at the size of them you will understand why!

 

The marker boards in respect of cycles being carried on the rear are a whole different thing. 

 

These marker boards are really intended for goods vehicles and caravans “fall into” the requirement for them by default really. I don’t think many caravaners bother with them and I have never heard of anyone being “done” for not having them. BUT there is always someone who will be first (like me :rolleyes: )

 

Andy

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This is the HGV type marker boards for long vehicles, yes? This is a classic example of poor European integration of road law. These are required for all long vehicles in the EU. The problem comes with the definition of long, and unfortunately Spain has decided that long starts at 12m for the entire rig. Thus, the boards have to be fitted to the back of any vehicle over 12m long entering Spain  and that encompasses most caravans. Unfortunately, the boards are illegal in many other countries if the rig isn't long by their definition. So you get a ridiculous situation. Even worse, if the boards ARE fitted, they have to be screwed or riveted into place. Officially. I have heard of people being stopped and find in the Burgos region, and apparently the police cars are equipped with tape measures to assess legality. The last time I went to Spain with the van I did fit the boards, but held them on with industrial velcro which did the job. My current rig is just over the 12m, and in fact we haven't taken it into Spain. It's your call really; ISTR the fine is in the region of €135 and of course you then have to fit the boards on the fly in Spain.

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Been going to Spain for over 20 years, granted I never go any further south than Barcelona. My outfit is around 13m long and I've never fitted them, never seen any similar length-ed German or Dutch outfits with them on either but I have seen a few Brits with them.

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You usually hear of the Spanish police having purges and then the forums Talk of fines and police sitting at ports with tape measures . If I remember the regulation calls for them to be fixed to the trailer .

 

I have not heard of any fines for a couple of years .

 

 

Dave

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I always cross the French/Spanish border at La Jonquera and I've never seen any police there. Better not be too smug though, we're crossing there in a few weeks time (without marker boards) and as Plodd says there always a first time for everything.

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F1558AA4-D7C0-4473-BBAA-62AD515AEE08.thumb.jpeg.9c22ef0d4849506d201540fe67327e06.jpegBolted to the grab handles with u bolts, easy to take off and on.

 

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Imaginative, but I have no idea if that fitment is legal!

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Perhaps the Spanish Police stop British caravans as although they aren't particularly long a lot of lightweight UK caravans have twin axles and give the illusion of being longer than they are and Germans/Dutch tend to have bigger caravans on a single axle which give the illusion of being shorter? I can't think of any other reason as to why UK caravanners get checked/measured by the Spanish Police, apart from Gibraltar, lol  :)

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3 hours ago, BFM said:

This is the HGV type marker boards for long vehicles, yes? This is a classic example of poor European integration of road law. These are required for all long vehicles in the EU. The problem comes with the definition of long, and unfortunately Spain has decided that long starts at 12m for the entire rig. Thus, the boards have to be fitted to the back of any vehicle over 12m long entering Spain  and that encompasses most caravans. Unfortunately, the boards are illegal in many other countries if the rig isn't long by their definition. So you get a ridiculous situation. Even worse, if the boards ARE fitted, they have to be screwed or riveted into place. Officially. I have heard of people being stopped and find in the Burgos region, and apparently the police cars are equipped with tape measures to assess legality. The last time I went to Spain with the van I did fit the boards, but held them on with industrial velcro which did the job. My current rig is just over the 12m, and in fact we haven't taken it into Spain. It's your call really; ISTR the fine is in the region of €135 and of course you then have to fit the boards on the fly in Spain.

 

Poor integration of EU regulations or the application of them by an  EU country?

Caravans in the UK are exempted by derogation from the regulations relating to marker boards.   Spain has chosen to require marker boards for certain outfits as it is entitled to do, and has specified how they should be fitted.   Non-compliance may bring about unwanted expense.

 

There are many derogations applied within the EU.

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3 hours ago, beejay said:

 

There are many derogations applied within the EU.

 

Exactly. It works the other way, too, with the UK not allowing caravans over 7m body length to be towed by a vehicle with a GVW of under 3500kg, although what length has to do with weight beats me.

Returning to the subject of marker boards, the OP says that he has a rear bicycle rack on his caravan. It would be much more important to have the overhanging load marker board  with the diagonal stripes that is required for Spain rather than the long vehicle marker board. I understand that the Spanish authorities are keener on the overhanging load board than the long vehicle one.

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I guess it's like most things, nearly everyone gets away with it but it's really annoying, inconvenient (and expensive) if you are the one that gets caught. It's probably easier to be prepared rather than getting pulled over.

 

A lot depends on how good your language skills are when arguing with the local law enforcement and it wouldn't surprise me if Brits don't get targeted a bit more often due to the Brexit fiasco especially if Boris starts chucking his weight around (assuming he get's a majority)

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10 minutes ago, Lutz said:

 

Exactly. It works the other way, too, with the UK not allowing caravans over 7m body length to be towed by a vehicle with a GVW of under 3500kg, although what length has to do with weight beats me.

 

 

 

The MoT had a consultation with interested parties regarding small trailer dimensions some years ago.  It was decided that whilst width would be increased to 2.55m length would remain unchanged at 7m leaving the UK alone within the EU with such short trailers. It appears that 7 metres was a conversion of 23 feet when metrication was introduced but why 23 feet originally remains unknown.

 

But then the UK does have its own weird derogations.

 

C & U Regulation 7(3)(a) permits length to exceed 7 metres for "trailers constructed and normally used for the conveyance of indivisible loads of exceptional length" when towed by a vehicle under 3500kg hence trailers for transporting gliders, racing sculls and yachts are possible.   Regulation 7 (5) (b)  limits the length of the towing vehicle to a maximum of 9.2m and the length of the combination to a maximum of 25.9m unless special police notification, escort and attendant requirements are complied with.  

 

Anyone fancy stuffing a racing scull in an overlength caravan and pleading it's an indivisible load?  :rolleyes:

 

 

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could you put a roof rack on the top of the van for your racing scull - that would do the trick

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22 hours ago, BFM said:

Imaginative, but I have no idea if that fitment is legal!

Obviously does not have the Christmas tree or flagpole when on the road, plates stamped with the BS number and at the correct height so all legal.

 

Ian

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