Australia has great weather, which is just one of many reasons why caravanning is so popular, but that weather can turn nasty and make for hazardous driving conditions. Wet weather presents its own safety hazards for any vehicle on the road, but doubly so if you’re towing a caravan.
Always check weather conditions and, if possible, delay your trip if heavy rain and lashing winds are forecast. However, if you’re already on the road when the rain starts, here are some tips to keep you and your vehicle safe in the wet.
Before You Leave
If you’re planning a caravan holiday, it stands to reason that it’s going to rain somewhere along the way, and even if it doesn’t, you should be prepared for all weather conditions.
Ensure the tyres on your vehicle and your caravan have plenty of tread and are correctly inflated. Check the braking systems on both vehicles, and make sure your wiper blades are in good condition. Make sure headlights, tail lights and brake lights are all working and that everything is closed properly and securely on the caravan to stop water getting in.
Give Yourself Plenty of Time
When the rain starts, slow down and give yourself plenty of time to get where you’re going. Be mindful of other road users whose driving skills and impatience could impact you, and if conditions get really bad, it’s best to pull over and wait it out. When strong winds accompany the rain, it becomes even more dangerous to stay on the road as the risk of caravan sway increases.
Allow More Room for Braking
Wet, oily roads can be a nightmare if you have to brake suddenly, and the added weight of your caravan makes stopping even harder. Allow more space between vehicles and reduce speed to compensate for lack of traction and increased stopping times. Brake gently and a little sooner than you would when driving in dry weather. Avoid large pools of water on the road wherever possible, and reduce your speed even more and brake gently when driving through puddles to decrease the chances of aquaplaning.
Allow for Reduced Visibility
Rainy weather reduces your visibility on the road so you can’t clearly see other vehicles and they can’t see you. Always have your headlights on low beam in the wet so you can be seen, and be extra vigilant and cautious.
Caravan Dealers – WA
Whether you’re a first-time camper or a seasoned adventurer, the professional team at PMX Campers is here to help you choose the right caravan for your needs with all the safety features you’d expect. We’re active members of the camping and off-roading community and can provide expert advice on all your caravan and camping requirements.