Drivers who tow caravans are being told to fit mirrors that give them a view that is wider than their vehicle. Drivers should be able to see clearly an area that is four metres wide from the side of a caravan. If not, they are at risk of being on the road illegally.
That’s according to Insurance specialists, Caravanwise, who point out that a caravan is significantly wider than a car and that unless towing mirrors are fitted, a driver may not be complying with the law. They say when towing a caravan that is wider than the narrowest part of a vehicle, fitting additional towing mirrors is a requirement. They advise drivers to look at the rear of their vehicle, with a caravan attached, to see the distance the door mirrors project from the car. If the towing mirrors are not visible from behind a caravan then wider mirrors need to be fitted. Experts at Caravanwise warn some owners to treat mirrors as "something they can do without". They warn drivers of larger tow cars may not install the part as they can "adjust their mirrors". However, they confirmed this was "not good enough" from a safety point of view. Caravanwise confirmed this crucial part is a legal requirement which drivers must have installed at all times.
Many caravanners treat towing mirrors as something that they can do without but the law says different. There is a legal requirement for you to have mirrors that allow you to see clearly an area that is four metres wide from the side of your caravan at a distance 20 metres behind the driver.
A caravan is significantly wider than a car even a large 4x4 and you simply can't comply with the law unless you fit towing mirrors. Drivers of larger tow cars may think that they are OK because they can adjust their mirrors so that they have some rearward vision but what they see is simply not good enough.
Basic towing mirrors can start from as little as £30 making them instantly more affordable than any potential penalties. A decent set of mirrors should last most of your towing life. Drivers are urged to buy mirrors that are designed to fit a wide variety of different vehicles. These mirrors must be E-Marked. As a very simple guide if you look at the rear of your car (without a caravan) and see the distance that the door mirror projects from the car.
This is how far out you should be able to see your Towing Mirrors from behind the caravan when towing. You have all seen the sign "If you can't see my mirrors then I can't see you". "If you can't see your Towing Mirrors from behind your caravan then you need wider mirrors."