If you ever wanna really find out about yourself, put your family in an RV and drive.
– Robin Williams, RV
There’s no better feeling than getting out of the house and going on a real adventure. That is why mankind invented a smaller, movable house and named it the “recreational vehicle.” (Those who are really in the know just call it an “RV.”)
Those in the know are also aware that RVs are unique, as they take all the safety hazards of a house and a large truck and roll them into one gigantic package. But does that mean you have to spend every moment in your RV dreading disaster? Of course not! That would be antithetical to the purpose of an RV, which is taking to the beautiful, endless asphalt ribbon weaving across this great land of ours, turning all of God’s creation into your backyard, and occasionally explaining to your kids that you don’t have time to stop at tourist attractions with names like “Jed’s Weasel Farm and Homemade Fireworks.”
Fear not, traveler. Just follow our recreational vehicle safety tips and you’ll stay safe and sound as you’re bounding down the open road.
Maintain Your RV
It’s not necessarily so bad if your RV’s engine won’t start (unless you’re Walter White in Breaking Bad). But you really don’t want that big vehicle to give you any mechanical issues while you’re behind the wheel. That’s why before your vacation starts you should inspect the belts, hoses, tires, headlights, turn signals, and any other equipment that is vital to your RV’s safe operation. And if you like camping in the wilderness, take care that squirrels and mice enjoy shredding apart wire insulation – inspect for rodential vandalism often! (Thankfully, RV insurance can sometimes cover damage caused by mice and other critters).
Be Prepared for Fires
According to the National Park Service, there are over 20,000 RV fires every year. That’s a statistic you definitely don’t want to contribute to! Fire safety is so important that we’re going to pull out the bullet points for this part of the article.
- Place fire extinguishers in your kitchen, bedroom, and your tow vehicle
- Install and regularly test smoke detectors
- Never leave the kitchen while you are cooking
- Plug no more than one heat-producing appliance into a single outlet
- Regularly check your propane tank, its pipes, and its fittings for leaks
- Make at least two emergency escape routes available at all times
- Turn off all heaters and lanterns before going to bed
- Keep all campfires at least 25′ from the vehicle
Fasten Your Seatbelts
Sitting in a comfy RV makes it easy to forget that you are operating a five-ton motor vehicle, so you may fall into the bad habit of casting some rules of the road aside. Resist complacency. More than 75,000 people were injured in RV accidents in 2012 alone, and many of them would have been prevented had every driver and passenger only worn their seatbelts.
Check Your Weather Forecast
So heavy a vehicle carries enormous momentum, which in turn makes it extremely difficult to regain control during a spin-out. If snow, heavy rain, sleet or strong winds could lurk ahead, hunker down instead of driving onward. It’s not as though you have to worry about finding a hotel with a vacancy, after all!
Don’t Forget Your RV Size
We know you’re probably accustomed to driving your 44.5″ tall Ferrari Testarossa around town, which is why it’s understandable that you might forget just how tall your RV really is. Class A RVs can be as tall as 14′! Many highway overpasses are lower than that, and little rinky-dink country bridges can easily (and noisily) turn your RV into a convertible. As much as we all hope this won’t happen, if you do damage your recreational vehicle, RV insurance can save you from the high cost of repairs.
Distribute Your Weight Evenly
If you place an uneven amount of weight on your RV’s port or starboard side, it’s going to make it far more difficult to steer. As a corollary, overloading your RV with too much weight will dramatically increase the amount of time it takes to brake to a complete stop. Check your RV’s manual for its weight limit and take extreme care never to exceed it.
Purchase RV Insurance
Our team at the Hoffman Agency dearly hopes you will never need RV insurance. But even the most careful RV owner may have an accident. That’s why we’re standing by to fully insure your vehicle and its passengers. The comprehensive policy we tailor for your unique needs will provide indispensable peace of mind while you’re out there living the dream.
Please contact us today for all your RV insurance needs in Sioux City and throughout the state of Iowa.