So real world be damned, if academically you can draw an imaginary correlation that could occur even though it hasnt, its time to act?
Did anyone say you were capable of changing the law? No. See I based my opinion, on what I read from your post.Who drew the imaginary correlation to implement test and tag and high vis shirts or reflective tape stuck on any vehicles, what studies proved we needed that crap and where's the studies that prove it's made any difference ?
I based my opinion on what I see on the roads and what I view is leading to a
growing problem, I wasn't aware that my opinion was going to change the law.
Don't worry, it won't be long and you won't be able to swim with wearing a
flotation devise. To save ourselves from ourselves.
I read today the SA government are considering swimming lessons for African migrants to educate them on the dangers of the ocean, after two drownings
in 12 months.
Quote"Did anyone say you were capable of changing the law? No. See I based my opinion, on what I read from your post.
Some fine arguments there but I find it hard to believe that statistics do not record at fault incidents involving vans. If a van is a potential contributer to an incident then it definitely should be recorded as such. And I'm sure most people want to do the right thing as far safety on road with their vans, but when you leave people to their own devices do they actually do them?If the article is reliable, the opinion caravaners are a danger, is imagined. The sky is falling.
self regulation and common sense prevails it seems.
We've all seen youtube vids of accidents from towing but are they as common as they seem, and are they really caused by the inexperienced/untrained?
I'd love to hear your thoughts as I may be picking up a camper trailer in the coming months and being inexperienced in towing, some unbiased opinions will be welcome.
But having a license doesn't guarantee you won't overload the vehicle as your post demonstrated. The only deterrent would be instant loss of license and impounding the vehicle and trailer. Do that a few times and most people will start giving a shit about overloading pretty quickly.Real world be damned, and imaginary correlation. You say.
The results are in. Hereunder a summary of Sergeant Shenton's report on this very successful event.
Firstly, keep in mind this is just a snap shot in time. Any figures I give should not be taken as scientifically analysed in anyway. Just raw data collected from those that were weighed or spoken to over the two days.
Next, the actual going out and weighing of vans was carried out to try and alter the perception (well founded) that police do not target caravans for compliance. That perception was to be altered by allowing various members of social media forums, Facebook groups, written magazines, radio and so on to witness the activity first hand and report on it. The object being to spread the word as far as possible that the chances of being weighed have now increased. This was then going to drive conversations and discussion across social media to encourage more caravan users to think about their situation and start to make some changes. Hopefully, they themselves would then help and encourage new entrants into the market to consider weights and safety BEFORE buying their van, not after and realising they had stuffed up!
There is so much anecdotal evidence on the internet about all these big overweight vans tracking up and down the highways. I wanted to test that evidence and get some real facts. I also wanted to get an idea of how much your average caravanner knows and understands about ratings and weights
The operation was setup to coincide with a very busy period of traffic passing through the East Gippsland town of Newmerella near Orbost. Caravans were to be brought in at random to be inspected and weighed. Some did come down voluntarily after hearing about it on social media.
Of the 80 plus caravans that passed through the site, 71 caravans were weighed. Only 1 motorhome surprisingly.
All were asked several questions
1. Do you actually know what your ratings are?
2. Have you ever weighed your rig?
3. Do you know what you weigh right now?
3. Can you provide an estimate of what you think you weigh right now?
4. Do you know where your compliance plate is?
Only 2 drivers knew all their ratings
Only 3 drivers had ever weighed their rigs
Only 3 drivers knew what they weighed at that moment.
ALL (except the 3 above) underestimated their weights as at that moment.
All knew where the compliance plate was. Two didnt have one attached.
Caravans were then weighed by my friends from Vic Roads. This was done by way of portable scales, all fully tested and certified.
GTM was measured hitched up.
Caravan was unhitched.
Ball weight was measured and ATM calculated.
These were then compared to plated ratings for the caravan and tow bar.
41 caravans were overweight in 1 or more category.
Most were within 10% of plated ratings.
5 were 20% over their plated ratings.
ATM was the most common issue, followed by actual ball weight and then tow bar capacity.
Highest over rating on ATM was 2880 kg on a plated ATM of 2600 kg.
Most over rating on ball download was 400 kg on max of 280 kg
Most over on Tow bar loading was 400 kg on max of 300 kg
Most ATM offences were in the 1500 kg to 2500 kg size vans. Camper trailers were the worst offenders. Loaded with bikes, kayaks, generators, tool boxes etc. Most of these had maximum ATM around 1650 and were consistently 100 plus kg over. These were also being towed by the smallest cars, many of them sedans that did not have the capacity to tow those weights. These were generally families of 4 or 5 and the car was also loaded up to max.
We did not have the time to weigh tow vehicles. However, those that were obviously an issue were given further advice. Overloaded tow vehicles are not included in the 41 offenders. If they had been I estimate at least another 15 or more offences against GVM and GCM would have been recorded.
Several with tinnies on the roof were weighed and none were significantly over on van weight. GVM/GCM may have been an issue.
Most notable tow vehicle offence was an older model Colorado towing a 5th wheeler. The 5th wheeler went to 3.5 tonne. The rear axle on the Colorado went 2.1 tonne. We did not unhitch. The Colorado also had boxes of tools, fuel and a generator in the back. They were full timers on the road and we had quite along chat.
Where possible, I had a look inside those vans that were overweight. The common issue here was that if you had placed items on the floor, under beds, on chairs and so on, then the van was overweight. If everything fitted into a proper cupboard and was not loose somewhere in the van, they were generally less likely to be overweight. One customer who was 350 kg over weight plead innocence as to how he could possibly be overweight. Then I opened his door and the first item at the door was an old steel 4 burner BBQ. 4 bikes to add to the 2 on the back, tents, swags, inflatable boats and lots of bags of clothes. He estimated he had 350 kg in his van. He had close to 700 kg if Tare was right.
Almost all were very surprised at what they actually weighed. Some just did not believe the scales.
Some of those using WDH believed that they allowed them to load more than ATM into the van because it would be transferred to the car via the hitch.
One person calculated what his payload could be by loading his van to ATM, then adding on what he measured his ball weight as because that came off the ATM when hitched. So ATM 3500, load to 3850 because the 350 kg was going on the tow ball and viola, back down to rated ATM. That was another long chat.
Of most concern was that most drivers had little idea of what they actually weighed. The fact we only had 41 offenders I think was more by luck than any sort of planning by the driver.
I recently heard that there's several Vic police cars now carrying scales to weigh trailers and there has also been a law change for carrying capacities of trailers being towed by vehicles with a GVM of 4.5t or higher.
You need to be licensed to drive a small truck of 4.5t GVM or over but can drive a 2.5t what ever towing 3.5t trailer or van and can happily get away with self regulation and common sense.
No problem there.
The insurance stats will be reliable (cant speak for the claims MrLord made), you can bet on that. They have significant money on the line and base competitive policy and premium mixes on those figures, you can bet some serious number monkeys work on them.Some fine arguments there but I find it hard to believe that statistics do not record at fault incidents involving vans. If a van is a potential contributer to an incident then it definitely should be recorded as such. And I'm sure most people want to do the right thing as far safety on road with their vans, but when you leave people to their own devices do they actually do them?
Its not the same, its not commercial. Its also ludicrous that anyone can drive a car for 50 hours without break, and fatigue is actually one of the fatal 4/5. Is it time for logbooks and mandatory rest times? Its one thing to declare rest is important, but logbooks declare when it must be taken too. Im not tired at all, but I need to take my blocks of 15. But at times I will be less ready to drive when books say I can, and timelines dictate I will.I dont think there should be a special towing licence, however, I think a combined vehicle weight licence as is now in place for trucks should be mandatory. It's ludicrous that someone who can get their licence in a micro Smart car is allowed to hitch up a 3.5 tonne van to a 200 series and legally drive off into the sunset.
Anyway, time to bash some truck drivers....I hate the ones driving tippers with dog trailers, they are a bunch of lunatics when they are empty.