The caravan licence is gaining speed and I got to say with the internet and social media now you do see a lot of vans wrecked and destroyed, but a licence if you really look hard, trucks, cars and bikes have more overall then vans and most van crashes seem to be around school holiday, public long weekends and such like.
I think there should be some sort of training for van drivers and how it is put into place is the key, maybe when you buy a van and before you can pick up you need a piece of paper to show you have under gone a training+ course, this can be a theory course done online with a practical 4 hrs on a special track, and if you buy a private sold van you get 30 days to complete a course after you pick up or rego is cancelled, so you only get a permit to pick up and take to your house and it is only for limited travel.
The course would include dealing with towing and how to load and get ready to tow and the skills and some help with skills required to know if something needed attention.
And from anytime a new driver get a new licence which today with the P plate system before they get an open licence a trailer caravan training course needs to be done. And to get the older driver once he or she buys a van they can’t register it till they complete a course and of course people who have vans now once their rego becomes due they need to complete online course within 30 days prior to rego due and a practical part of course within 60days or face a limiting permit to use van or a ban till completed.
Mind you no licence or training course will stop accidents as they will happen and you can’t stop people doing silly things, and experience can help but it may not be anything you can do, but if you can help or show people that having just added an extra weight and length to your driving skills can make a huge difference to how you drive and you need to understand that slowing down to a speed that you can get out of trouble is and it’s not always go at the 100km limit as some and I mean a lot of tow cars if you take the time to read do have a speed limit in their manuals for any extra load or van to that car and that could be as much as 80km max speed and they don't tell you and you don’t understand the stress and forces on that car if you push it over that speed and then try to stop up quickly and it just will not do it. As we travel you start to understand that speed is not a key to getting anywhere I have had vans pass us at over 110km. and 50 or 80 km. Down the road we catch up or pass them parked up having lunch or getting fuel, you must learn to drive to the road you are on and they can be great or as bumpy as you can get and you need to slow for two reasons first you will get very worn out trying to hold the van and car straight and you could damage something that will cause you to stop and not get to where you are going
Simple things like don’t travel open roads with big vans in high winds at any speed over 60km, wait for a day or two. Don’t travel in heavy rain or when you are sleepy and avoid travelling at night mainly because your instinct is to get out the way of a kangaroo or anything that appeared in front of you and when towing any quick turns on the wheels are going to be a hard thing to stop putting you into a bad place.
How many times have you been in a van park and in comes the family with the van loaded to the eye balls, and it takes about two days to set up, its Down right scary the load they were carrying and most times their van has been sitting in the back yard for past 12 months and they load it up and drive to a holiday late afternoon and at speed to get to somewhere so they can start their holiday, see my point here no prep work no thought and no idea.
First off you know where you are going so do you require full water tanks and that 6 cartons of beer and enough food for whole 2 weeks and etc. a little planning us easy take a little water in case you get held up, drive when fresh and after spending a few days checking everything and take the van for a drive for at least 30min to se how it tows and brakes etc. make sure all good, pump up the tyres to right pressure, don’t fill the fridge and cupboards with so much stuff, wait till you get to where ever and then go shopping if going bush then shop at last shops before heading into bush, those simple things can save 3 to 400 kg. Of extra weight.
These are things that most full-time travellers do and work out as they go, I know we don’t shop big any more what we can use within a week and don’t over load the van when moving between places and don’t have a freezer full to over flowing as there are shops open in most places now . I am saying better planning stopping every 2 hours or so even if just to top up fuel, go for a walk around van, go have a pee and drive to the roads you travel and limit driving to daylight hours and remember getting there is not a race, how many times people I meet how feel proud they are getting to a place at the quickest time, they may get away with that a few times but it will catch up one day. If you don't drive a lot in your job just too and from home don't jump in car with and loaded up and think you can drive 800km. to that special place, you are going to be a very dangerous driver about 500km into that trip. Just remember that once you reach that van park or bush camp you still have to set up the palace of your dreams and if you are worn out, the war may begin with the wife and that is not a way to start a holiday.
Maybe have a read of this, and you will understand a little more, I found this after I wrote my words of wisdom and I am glad to say they are right
Just right click on photo
Just right click on photo