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Don’t Lose Your Cargo: Towing Safety 101
No matter whether you’re towing a boat or a trailer, doing so safely is paramount. There’s very little possibility that you’ll be the only driver on the road, which means that you’re responsible for not only the safety of yourself and your passengers, but for those you share the road with. Not to mention, there’s little doubt that you want your cargo to make it to your destination with you. Here’s how to tow the right way:
1.Loading Your Trailer
If you’re pulling a trailer, make sure that you pay careful attention to the way that you load it. Your load should be centered as much as possible, and the center of gravity should be kept low. Make sure that about 60 percent of the total weight of your load is placed in front of the axle. Loading your trailer correctly will ensure that you are able to pull your cargo as safely and efficiently as possible.
2.Installing Your Hitch
The first step in installing your hitch correctly is ensuring that you’ve bought the proper one. Before deciding on your hitch, talk to a parts professional. Tell the professional what you’ll be towing and what you’ll be using to tow it. Once you’ve decided on a hitch, make sure that you follow the manufacturer’s instructions when installing it on your truck. If you aren’t sure how to hook it up properly, have a professional do the job for you.
Did you know that many accidents could have been prevented if drivers had simply checked their hitches? Experts from Curt Manufacturing suggest stopping after you’ve driven 100 miles and checking your connections. It’s at this point that you should make any adjustments necessary. Doing so will help to ensure that your trailer or cargo is being pulled safely.
Towing cargo necessitates a different style of driving. Be careful changing lanes, realizing that you have extra length on the back of your vehicle. Keep a calm head when those around you are driving too fast or too slow. When pulling into a parking lot, be sure that you have enough space to park and pull out without having to make difficult maneuvers. When you don’t have enough room, look for somewhere else to park.
If you must drive in bad weather, keep your wits about you. You’ll need more time to come to a complete stop, and it’s not unusual for your trailer to sway in high winds. When driving in inclement weather, keep your headlights on, ensure that all lights on your trailer are functioning properly, and keep your foot light.
Towing cargo, boats and trailers is not a difficult thing to do; it simply takes know-how and practice. If you have a need to move large objects from one place to another, making sure that you have the proper equipment and practice safe driving habits will keep you safe. Follow the tips above and your cargo and others on the road will be as safe as you.
Writer Dan Nielson is an avid full-time blogger. Looking for safe ways to tow your stuff? Make sure that if you’re towing , you find the correct trailer hitch for the job.