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DVSA road safety checks this week end.


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2 hours ago, german in the blood said:

Maybe the 85% guide should become a law ?

Something needs to change for the families closure.

  

How can the 85% be made law when there is so much confusion around the supposedly  actual ex. factory or delivered to customer weights, which is all Joe Public can go from and how they may be interpreted from new, of both the van and car.

 

How many times on CT do we see the phrase, or similar that " I tried to work out the 85%  for my set up but car/van document/ plates state X weight, but on a weighbridge they are less or more !

 

As mentioned hundreds of times, this is only an advisory limit for those new to caravanning and towing, however even this limit and the way it is arrived at, devised by interested parties years ago, is open to misinterpretation  and no doubt, going by the advances in caravans over recent years, needs revising and updating.

 

What follows may appear that I'm callous, I'm not.

 

I doubt any new trailer law i.e. 85%  will give the family closure, was the cause of the accident caused by the set up being over 85%, I doubt it.

 

There are tens of thousands of deaths and life changing injuries on the roads, caused not by there being a law to prevent something, in virtually all of these accidents there will be a law preventing an action, speeding, drink driving, on the phone, bald tires etc. that was a major contributing factor in the accident, so why do they happen.............the driver chose to break the law, we see this day in day out on the roads.

 

More laws may not prevent  fewer deaths and injury on the roads, however catching  and prosecuting more law breakers and having harsh punitive measures that the judiciary stick to, may well reduce deaths and injury.

 

Yet another law, will be like too many others, limited apprehensions ( unless it's a captive audience easily rounded up ) limited prosecutions, limited punishments, subject to tricky defence lawyers, soft magistrates and judges who believe sob stories and feel sorry for the defendant !

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5 hours ago, tom_1989 said:

I get there are lots of trailers out there overloaded and badly maintained however do these cause a disproportionate amount of accidents on the road? Would the police and highways agencies be better off actually policing the roads properly looking out for people speeding, hogging the middle lane, drink/drug driving, driving uninsured vehicles etc. If they see a trailer that looks iffy then yes they can be pulled over as well. I personally feel these spot checks are the authorities picking the low fruit and then shouting how good they are and how much safer they have made the roads when in reality there time would be much better spent doing other things.

 I tend to agree that a more visible police presence would act as a deterrent, and increased the 'perceived possibility' of being stopped. With greater, or more flexible budget, would doubtless help in this but the authorities have limited finance and manpower, so are restricted in what is possible.

 

3 hours ago, german in the blood said:

Maybe the 85% guide should become a law ?  

Absolutely not, otherwise a number of currently legal and safe combinations would be banned from our roads. No! What is needed is education, not legislation and punishment.

Fourwinds Hurricane 31D Motorhome. Also MGTF135 1. 8i Roadster (fun) & Volvo V70 3.2Ltr LPG (everyday car)
Unless otherwise stated, my posts will be my personal thoughts and have the same standing as any other member of Caravan and Motorhome Talk.

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I am sorry to diverge a little on this thread, but can some please clarify which car weight is the legal towing weight with a caravan. Is it the kerbside weight or the towing weight. I know the caravan can only go up to its MPTLM.

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1 hour ago, LenV said:

I am sorry to diverge a little on this thread, but can some please clarify which car weight is the legal towing weight with a caravan. Is it the kerbside weight or the towing weight. I know the caravan can only go up to its MPTLM.

 

Legally it is the car's Maximum Gross Train Weight, which is usually the car's Maximum Gross Weight plus the Maximum Towing weight.  Matching caravans to car's unladen weights/kerb weights is a guide given from the various organisations to try and give more driver control in the event of instability occurring with the caravan.  Of course, B category licence holders are also governed by their licence restrictions.

2018 Volvo V90 and 2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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Thank you Gary.

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The easy way to find it out is to look a your cars VIN plate. Take the highest number, and subtract the second highest number from it.

 

That’s the max gross weight of your caravan. 

 

So for  my car (Vin plate below) it’s 3710kg (max train weight) minus  2710 kg (max gross car wright) which leaves 1600kg.  That figure can be “tinkered” with a bit if the tow car weighs in at less than it’s maximum but let’s not confuse too many people here shall we! 

 

 

 

 

1D1003F0-66AF-43CB-AF7A-9109E7D74048.jpeg

Experience is something you acquire after you have an urgent need for it.

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Got it thanks guys. Mine is Gross Train Mass - 4500kg   Gross Vehicle weight - 2400kg.    Towing weight is 2100kg.

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Posted (edited)

I dodged a bullet last week with these road checks when towing for our weeks holiday. We currently have two tow cars and unknowingly I hadn't swapped over to the correct number plate on the caravan for the tow car I was using.

 

Also, one of my Milenco towing mirrors fell off whilst towing on the motorway when a car in the middle lane came too close to me as it was moving over to allow an ambulance to pass him, clipping my mirror with his. Thankfully I always secure them with a cable tie to act as a lanyard incase this happens, so it was saved. Couldn't pull over safely for quite some miles to reattach it, so had to tow with one mirror.

 

People like me shouldn't be allowed on the roads!

 

 

Edited by JCCD
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Also, one of my Milenco towing mirrors fell off whilst towing on the motorway when a car in the middle lane came too close to me as it was moving over to allow an ambulance to pass him, clipping my mirror with his. Thankfully I always secure them with a cable tie to act as a lanyard incase this happens, 

 

Good idea. I must try and remember to do that.

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Posted (edited)
On 07/06/2021 at 16:15, Mr Plodd said:

The easy way to find it out is to look a your cars VIN plate. Take the highest number, and subtract the second highest number from it.

 

That’s the max gross weight of your caravan. 

 

So for  my car (Vin plate below) it’s 3710kg (max train weight) minus  2710 kg (max gross car wright) which leaves 1600kg.  That figure can be “tinkered” with a bit if the tow car weighs in at less than it’s maximum but let’s not confuse too many people here shall we! 

 

 

 

 

1D1003F0-66AF-43CB-AF7A-9109E7D74048.jpeg

 

Andy, it's been a long day and you've confused me, where do you get your  2710 kg  value from your Vin plate? Your 1,600 is correct, I assume a typo?

 

I'm surprised there's quite a difference between my CX5 and your Mazda 6, the CX is 420 kg heavier!

Edited by Dave Capiro owner
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Think you'll find he mis typed 2710 and it should be 2110 then take that from 3710 to give 1600.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Trek said:

Think you'll find he mis typed 2710 and it should be 2110 then take that from 3710 to give 1600.

 

You are correct! (***** Fat Finger Syndrome)

I have 1600kg as a max trailer weight (current van max’s Out at 1450 :) ) 

 

2 hours ago, Dave Capiro owner said:

 

I'm surprised there's quite a difference between my CX5 and your Mazda 6, the CX is 420 kg heavier!

 

Is it 4 fwd? If so that would account for the difference.

 

A pal had a 2 wheel drive CX 5 and if I recall he had a higher towing capacity than me even though the running gear and platform are apparently identical :blink:

 

So it’s clearly not just down to the hill start ability with a specific load.

Edited by Mr Plodd

Experience is something you acquire after you have an urgent need for it.

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2 hours ago, Mr Plodd said:

 

You are correct! (***** Fat Finger Syndrome)

I have 1600kg as a max trailer weight (current van max’s Out at 1450 :) ) 

 

 

Is it 4 fwd? If so that would account for the difference.

 

A pal had a 2 wheel drive CX 5 and if I recall he had a higher towing capacity than me even though the running gear and platform are apparently identical :blink:

 

So it’s clearly not just down to the hill start ability with a specific load.

No, standard 2WD. Max tow 2,000 kg

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Bizarre then isn’t it, same platform, same engine/gearbox etc, higher MIRO and a higher towing capacity.

 

Logic says with a higher MIRO the towing capacity (if just dependent on hill start ability) should be lower,  so the GTW of both would be about the same.

Experience is something you acquire after you have an urgent need for it.

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6 hours ago, Cheltenham Caravanner said:

Also, one of my Milenco towing mirrors fell off whilst towing on the motorway when a car in the middle lane came too close to me as it was moving over to allow an ambulance to pass him, clipping my mirror with his. Thankfully I always secure them with a cable tie to act as a lanyard incase this happens, 

 

Good idea. I must try and remember to do that.

 

I have a cable tie looped around my wing mirror, and loop another through that, and through one of the holes in the Milenco bracket. They have saved my mirror twice now, when otherwise I would have lost them,

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8 hours ago, JCCD said:

 

I have a cable tie looped around my wing mirror, and loop another through that, and through one of the holes in the Milenco bracket. They have saved my mirror twice now, when otherwise I would have lost them,

Why not just use the Milenco rubber straps for security? Saves having to overtihten the  clamps too.

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11 hours ago, Tuningdrew said:

Why not just use the Milenco rubber straps for security? Saves having to overtihten the  clamps too.

 

I'm not sure they do them for the Grand Aero mirrors do they?

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Getting back to the original heading of this thread! How many forum members have actually  been stopped in a road side/service area check?

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13 minutes ago, JohnPat said:

Getting back to the original heading of this thread! How many forum members have actually  been stopped in a road side/service area check?

In 2001 on the A148 between Kings Lynn and Fakenham. Friday evening before a Bank Holiday. Waved into a long lay by and told to wait. Fellow came up shortly and said as we had young children and it was getting late, we could go. I said I was in no hurry and would be interested to see how much the van weighed. I heard him say under his breath to one of his colleagues, words to the effect of "We've got a right one here". Both axles of the towing vehicle and the caravan axle were weighed and we were told the caravan was 25kg under the gross weight and that we could add a bag of potatoes if we wanted. Well we were in Norfolk!Caravan was only a few months old, so no worries there and towing vehicle an older but well maintained VW T4 LWB minibus conversion so well within its limits.Think we were possibly stopped because of having a German caravan pulled by what appeared to be a commercial vehicle. 

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12 hours ago, Dobloseven said:

In 2001 on the A148 between Kings Lynn and Fakenham. Friday evening before a Bank Holiday. Waved into a long lay by and told to wait. Fellow came up shortly and said as we had young children and it was getting late, we could go. I said I was in no hurry and would be interested to see how much the van weighed. I heard him say under his breath to one of his colleagues, words to the effect of "We've got a right one here". Both axles of the towing vehicle and the caravan axle were weighed and we were told the caravan was 25kg under the gross weight and that we could add a bag of potatoes if we wanted. Well we were in Norfolk!Caravan was only a few months old, so no worries there and towing vehicle an older but well maintained VW T4 LWB minibus conversion so well within its limits.Think we were possibly stopped because of having a German caravan pulled by what appeared to be a commercial vehicle. 

Believe me, most of us know nothing about caravans it will be the fact you were towing with what looked like (from the front) a commercial vehicle and an older one at that. Most stop checks are focused on road worthiness more than gross train/axle weights etc. So looking for tyre condition, general loading, security of load and licence checks etc. 

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Some caravaners do seem to get very obsessed with weights, loads, tyres etc. I guess it's a good thing, but when they aren't towing I reckon some of those very same people are happy to turn a blind eye to other areas of the Road Traffic Act, such as letting their speed creep over the speed limit etc. For some reason, hitching up their caravan makes them put a different head on when it comes to the law.

 

I now await the 'I never speed' replies :D

Edited by JCCD
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Having travelled the M5 on what was probably the busiest week end of the year so far, I was horrified by the amount of towing vehicles:-

1) Going much too fast (when the roads were flowing) lol.  

2) I counted 14 vehicles towing or large motorhomes in the outside lane of the M5 between J16 and J23. :o

 

I spoke to two families who had hired motorhomes for the week (reputable company).  Both of them were over 3.5 Tonnes, neither driver had B+E on their licence.  Weren't bothered when I explained that they shouldn't be driving them.  Claimed a "friend" had lent them the rigs.  Neither family had a clue when it came to how anything worked. One guy was even seen emptying his toilet cassette down the grey water drain on his pitch, this was when the contents were overflowing out of the access door.  Totally oblivious to any rules/etiquette.  The owner of the site spoke to them on at least 5 separate occasions regarding their behaviour/noise etc. Didn't make a blind bit of difference.  One guy locked himself out one night and broke one of the windows to get in it. 

When you have got incidents like this, I can only hope Karma catches up with them. So unless legislation is brought in I don't see how you stop this.  There will always be unscrupulous dealers/hirers etc profiteering from this staycation boom.

 

 

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19 minutes ago, Wonkydonkey said:

Both of them were over 3.5 Tonnes, neither driver had B+E on their licence. 

Shouldn't that be C1 ?

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1 hour ago, Silversurf said:

Shouldn't that be C1 ?

Sorry my mistake. I meant they just had a basic licence.

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1 hour ago, Wonkydonkey said:

Having travelled the M5 on what was probably the busiest week end of the year so far, I was horrified by the amount of towing vehicles:-

1) Going much too fast (when the roads were flowing) lol.  

2) I counted 14 vehicles towing or large motorhomes in the outside lane of the M5 between J16 and J23. :o

 

I spoke to two families who had hired motorhomes for the week (reputable company).  Both of them were over 3.5 Tonnes, neither driver had B+E on their licence.  Weren't bothered when I explained that they shouldn't be driving them.  Claimed a "friend" had lent them the rigs.  Neither family had a clue when it came to how anything worked. One guy was even seen emptying his toilet cassette down the grey water drain on his pitch, this was when the contents were overflowing out of the access door.  Totally oblivious to any rules/etiquette.  The owner of the site spoke to them on at least 5 separate occasions regarding their behaviour/noise etc. Didn't make a blind bit of difference.  One guy locked himself out one night and broke one of the windows to get in it. 

When you have got incidents like this, I can only hope Karma catches up with them. So unless legislation is brought in I don't see how you stop this.  There will always be unscrupulous dealers/hirers etc profiteering from this staycation boom.

 

 

It will all calm down when they can go back to the Mediterranean again.

 

Unfortunately there will then be a glut of abused caravans and motorhomes on the market to depress the px values.

 

If anyone is considering upgrading they should sell this year, quick

 

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