We, at Henderson's Line-up, came up with a list of safety tips to help you feel confident and secure when traveling in your motorhome. When we practice and prepare ahead of time by keeping these tips in mind, there is no fearful hanging onto the steering wheel with white knuckles when driving in your big rig. Feeling safe when driving in your RV is vital to driving safely and will help you avoid a crash.
Know Your Tail Swing
You are sure to have heard the term Rear Overhang and Tail Swing when talking up RV'ers. The Family Motor Coach Association defines tail swing as "the distance that the body of the coach behind the pivot point moves in the opposite direction of the front when you turn." Keeping your rear overhang and the tail swing your RV makes in mind when pulling into a parking lot, or making a turn can make the difference between safe travels and an insurance claim.
Know How Tall Your RV Is
Most RV's are between 11- and 13-feet overall height. It is vital to measure your RV to make sure you can fit under that overpass, tunnel, or bridge before braving the attempt. The cost to repair the state highway can be astronomical, not to mention having to turn in a claim to your insurance company. Knowing your overall height will put your mind to ease when approaching that tunnel.
Adjust Those Mirrors
RV's are large. We recommend taking the time to adjust your mirrors and look then readjust if needed. It isn't easy to see what is behind or beside you, having every advantage with your mirrors will help.
Keep an Eye on The Weather
Your RV can act like a sail in a big windstorm and blow you around, or even worse, a big gust of wind could blow you over. Most of us have seen the video of a big semi-truck towing a container blowing over. That is a real concern in a big vehicle and one we all want to avoid. Check the weather for wind, snow, and rain. Avoid driving in poor visibility such as fog, ice, and hail, if at all possible. Driving your RV should be a pleasurable experience, so avoid a tight timeline when traveling and allow yourself the liberty of a weather window.
Feeling drowsy? Take the time to pull over and take a little snooze before powering down the road again. Driving an RV takes your full attention; it is essential to be alert to your surroundings and road conditions at all times. Let's play it safe and take it easy on yourself, you have a nice bed waiting for you, so take a little siesta and enjoy your motorhome!
Many car and truck drivers are in a big hurry to get from point A to point B. They don't have the luxury of traveling in their home, so give them a break and help them out by staying to the right, and use your blinker early. Staying to the right is helpful for several reasons; you are already close to the shoulder if any issue arises, you can see better from your driver's mirror knowing there is no traffic on your right-hand side.
Magic number 63
Go slow, the magic number when driving an RV is generally known to be 63 MPH. This speed offers you enough power to get up that mountain pass, allow other traffic to pass safely, and gives you the ability to slow to a stop in a reasonable amount of time.
Know When to Brake
Stopping in an RV takes much longer than in a car. Plan your stop well in advance and keep a clear path in front of you. A good rule of thumb is to keep 6 seconds of space in front of you to allow plenty of time to stop. Keep 400 to 500 feet of distance between you and the car ahead of you; you will be glad that you did!
The team at Henderson's Line-Up in Grants Pass, Oregon, knows you love your RV. We want you to have a safe and enjoyable trip. We are here to consult, offer an RV inspection, or take care of any repairs for you. We invite you to book an appointment with us today, and remember, Jesus loves you!
P.S. If you would like to see the first chapter of Robert Henderson’s new book, Living Life One Mile At A Time, click here.