Whether packing up for a holiday, making a trip across the country to University or even just taking a beloved pet to the vet, it is your responsibility as the driver to ensure that the vehicle is never overloaded and that you and others are protected. Making sure that everything is securely fastened and doesn’t obstruct your view is crucial to driving safely when carrying irregular loads.
Below are some tips on exactly what you need to do to stay safe r and inside the law when loading your cam and making trips with less common loads:
If travelling with a dog then they should have a special harness that keeps them strapped in, or be kept behind a grill in the boot. Other animals should be carried in cages and secured with a seatbelt. Make sure packages are secured in the boot if an animal is in there and that small items are put on the floor.
There are specially designed roof boxes to carry bulky items and special cycle racks if you are carrying bicycles. If you do use a rack then make sure that the bars are properly attached and that the bike is tightly and securely tied to it. A roof box is the better option to keep bulkier loads safe and dry but remember that these add height to your car.
The more you carry, the more your car’s performance will be effected. Think about breaking sooner and work out an adequate distance. You may need to adjust your headlights too and think about inflating your tyres more, checking your handbook for accurate pressures. Remember to amend these changes once the car is emptied
It may seem obvious but make sure to always place the heaviest items in first and at the bottom of any piles you make, with the lightest items on top. Not only does this protect your load, it also centres the cars gravity, making handling and breaking easier.
For longer items make sure you fold down the back seats of your car and are able to see out of the back window. Never be tempted to have long loads poke out the back of your car with the lid pulled down. Either invest in a roof rack or hire a van.