A few years ago when I took my Class 3 driving test, I remember the instructor telling me that around 75% of the people pulling Class 5 trailers in Manitoba regularly hauled overweight and didn’t even know it. That struck me as a very high number, considering the pitfalls of overloading a truck and/or trailer. Not only could you damage your equipment, when you’re hauling overweight you become a danger to others in your community.
Here are some general reminders:
– Know the limitations of your equipment
– Know the rules of the road
– Inspect your equipment before hauling
– Inspect your equipment periodically during long hauls
– Maintain your equipment
– Ensure that loads are balanced and secure
– Maintain proper following distance
– Use a weight distribution hitch when necessary
– Always drive to the conditions
Trust me, you do not want to be hauled off to the weigh scales by the police or a Motor Carrier Enforcement Officer, forced to drop your trailer somewhere because of a safety infraction, or end up with a broken hitch or axle. If the inconvenience isn’t enough of a deterrent, the stiff fines should be.
For more detailed information, I strongly recommend checking out the following resources available through Manitoba Public Insurance:
Trailer Safety – https://www.mpi.mb.ca/en/PDFs/TrailerSafety.pdf
Professional Drivers Manual – https://www.mpi.mb.ca/en/PDFs/TrailerSafety.pdf
Don’t end up like this guy!