Towing Mirrors And UK Law
Do you comply?
The law around towing mirrors is straightforward; however, it may be shocking to realise that many UK caravaners either don’t understand it, or completely disregard the rules …
Caravaners can sometimes think towing mirrors are something that they can do without, but the law says differently. Drivers must use mirrors that allow them to clearly see an area that is 4 metres wide from the side of their caravan, at a distance of 20 metres.
“As caravans are much wider than cars, it’s not possible to comply with the law unless you use towing mirrors!”
Merely adjusting the mirrors on larger vehicles, such as a 4×4, is not good enough as there will still be blind-spots that the driver can’t see. Remember, they have to ‘clearly see’ a 4 x 20-metre area on each side of the caravan.
The Caravan Safety and Security Group (CSSG) warned:
”many drivers wrongly believe that because they are towing with substantial 4×4 vehicles, that towing mirrors are not required. When police check caravan outfits, one of the most common problems they find is a lack of towing mirrors; something that could potentially cost you more than the price of the mirrors.”
Most towing mirrors are either strapped and clamped onto the existing vehicle mirror, and these offer a more secure and steady solution to comply with UK legislation. However, suction type towing mirrors can be easier to adjust although they may obscure a little bit of view from the existing mirrors when fitted.
Some caravanners say that a rear view camera, located in the caravan’s rear window is also a useful tool when changing lanes or even reversing. These can be wireless or wired, but remember, they are not a replacement for towing mirrors. Using both maybe a good idea.
Do note though, if you are involved in a road traffic accident which is deemed your fault and you did not have towing mirrors fitted to your vehicle, your insurance will be invalidated so it makes a lot of sense to fit them when towing your caravan.
The guidance set out on this page is provided for general guidance purposes only, and does not purport to be legal advice or a definitive interpretation of the law.