Alarming rise in RAC insurance claims involving caravan crashes

Breanna RedheadThe West Australian
Camera IconCredit: rammi76 - stock.adobe.com, A4469 Stefan Rampfel

Holidaymakers are being warned to take extra care on the roads with alarming statistics revealing a 50 per cent jump in caravan collisions this year — with September being a notoriously bad month for crashes.

The warning comes as families across the State prepare to wander out yonder over the school holidays, which start on September 25.

RAC claims manager Glen Walker said the company’s statistics recorded a worrying 87 caravan-related incidents in September last year — the worst month on RAC record.

“There are more people out on the road and of course with our COVID lockdowns and people not being able to travel internationally, or more recently across Australia, people are investing in caravans,” he said.

“More caravans on the road invariably means more propensity to having collisions.

“And I think the other thing is people not perhaps being prepared for towing their caravan and inexperience as well.”

A recent survey by the RAC revealed that a third of respondents had done little to no research or training prior to taking their caravan on the road.

Mr Walker emphasised the importance of being prepared in order for motorists to keep themselves and others safe.

He advised caravan owners to investigate not only the condition of the caravan but also the vehicle towing it.

“The first thing to do is actually think about your tow vehicle and its capacity and condition to tow,” Mr Walker said.

“Then when you’re hitching up the caravan, really think about how you’re loading your caravan because that can make an absolute critical difference to the way the caravan tows behind you.”

Last year, RAC implemented a “safe travels” initiative to give free caravan safety training to owners.

Mr Walker encouraged drivers to practice towing a caravan before hitting the road.

He said tt would give them confidence under pressure.

“Caravanning is an extremely rewarding way to travel but it’s also very different to normal driving and can be dangerous if you’re inexperienced … so why not get a little bit of practice,” Mr Walker said.

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