Drive calls for Australia to implement
a towing licence
Sydney, Wednesday 6th December 2023 – With road traffic about to hit seasonal highs across Australia, leading automotive network Drive.com.au, is calling for a nationally recognised towing endorsement for Australian drivers' licences as a crucial step toward safer driving.
Australians have a long-standing affinity for towing and caravanning. With the rising cost of living and off the back of Covid-19 restrictions, caravanning has seen a rise in popularity. Despite increasing numbers of towed vehicles on our roads, there is no required training or restrictions for towing vans for those who hold a full licence in Australia. This means that anyone with a C Class license in Australia can tow one of the 800,000 caravans, campervans and camper trailers registered to be on our roads.
James Ward, Director of Content at Drive said: “The first towing experience many Australians have is the moment they drive out of the caravan dealership with their new caravan, campervan or camper trailer hitched to the back of their vehicle. They are learning to tow while driving and often on busy roads in holiday periods.
“Before towing, drivers need to know how to handle substantial weights. They need to understand and experience how both their vehicle and the towed vehicle respond in different situations and they need to understand the impact of weights. That’s why Drive has launched this petition,” added Ward.
Daniel Sahlberg, Chief Executive Officer of the Caravan Industry of Victoria explained: “Caravanning is a multi-generation Australian way of holidaying, however, over the past decade caravans and RVs have increased in both length and weight.
“The five-metre pop-top vans of the past have been largely replaced by vans measuring almost 10 metres and weighing over 3,500 kilograms. Just as greater driver skills and knowledge are needed to tow these longer heavier vans, regulation needs change to keep pace with the ever-evolving – and growing – caravan market,” added Sahlberg.
Get in the know before you tow
For the novice tower, Drive recommends getting in the know about the following three areas before you set off over the holiday period:
- Know how to get hitched
Know and understand how to hitch the van or towed vehicle onto the car so that it fully locked in. The chains may be connected but if the hitch is not locked the towed vehicle will drop to the ground upon movement or when the car hits a bump.
- Know your weights
Know and understand the weight capacities of your car, your caravan, camper or trailer, and understand how to load the weight across your vehicle and caravan so each works together.
- Know your conditions
Know and understand the weather conditions before you drive. Rain and lightning conditions are important, but wind can take hold of the van or towed vehicle and make the driver lose control.
Ward concluded: “At Drive, we are focused on providing advice to drivers and helping them get the most out of their car. But we believe education is just one step to safe towing. The implementation of a towing endorsement is an important step toward a more aware and responsible attitude for drivers on our road.”
To join Drive’s call for a national towing licence and sign the petition head to: https://www.change.org/p/implement-a-nationally-recognised-towing-endorsement-for-australian-driver-s-licences
Ph: 0420 894 664
Ph: 0435 888 669