Huge new caravan towing course facility to open

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Caravan towing course
Perfect location for a caravan towing course. PIC: Google Map

As the popularity of caravanning continues to grow, so too – tragically – do the numbers of terrible accidents involving caravans.

With every new crash, the calls grow for more and better training to be offered to grey nomads and other travellers who plan to tow a van or trailer as explore the country. Some are even saying that the taking a towing course should be mandatory for all caravanners.

While it is a subject that divides opinion, what cannot be denied is that there is a growing demand for these sorts of courses, and a similar growth in businesses eager to help people stay safe on the road.

For example, the Bundaberg Regional Council in Queensland has just approved the conversion of a former go-kart track into a new driver education facility tailored towards car, caravan, trailer, motorhome and bike owners.

Council planning and development spokesman Ross Sommerfeld told the Bundaberg News-Mail that the site at Burnetts Heads Rd, Rubyanna, was perfect for the project.

“It’s a great location and not in mainstream traffic,” he said. “It’s a great idea especially with all the grey nomads here, and we encourage anything that’s going to look after our citizens and prepare them for tomorrow.”

Neil Irvine, the Bundaberg developer who also runs APS Training Group, said it would not simply be about driving.

It will also include sessions on general maintenance, trailer handling and use, towing, backing trailers and caravan safely, understanding of safe load limits and safely securing vehicle loads internally and externally.

And if you can’t tell the difference between your alternator or your water pump, you’re in luck.

“We will talk to people about servicing vehicles and understanding what to look for,” Mr Irvine said.

The facility will also house two large warehouses to store vehicles and a caretaker’s residence.

·         Have you ever taken a towing course? Do you think they should be mandatory for all caravanners? Comment below.

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15 Responses to Huge new caravan towing course facility to open

  1. What a great idea if they include how to handle a swaying van, putting on the breaks in emergency and windy conditions. Did a course for $650 and only learned how to back, go around witches hats. Waste of money

  2. What a great idea. We (I) have been looking for something like this for ages,

  3. Yes mandatory, we have a van and we see some terrible things, firstly people need to know which size vehicle to tow the van then how to load etc weight distribution and it not just oldies !!

  4. There should be a mandatory licence for towing . And it should be coupled together with the appropriate trade training from industry professionals. Far to many armchair people buy a $200,000.00 package and hit the road only to end in disaster.
    We lived on the road for 14 years and have seen first many distasters .
    I myself have had a HR license since 1970. Courtesy of the RAAF training.
    And have maintained it every year.
    Now i tow a rig 15 mtrs long which is 4 mtrs short of a semi trailer weighing 6 tonne, so I’m accutly aware of my responsibility
    This in the hands of a novice is a very dangerous weapon.

  5. This is a great idea. Some grey nomads, and others have never towed a thing during their life and they hit the road with a huge van, loaded to the gunnels, and then panic when things get out of hand.

  6. Great idea, wish we had something similar out in the North West NSW, I am keen to get behind the wheel & tow our Van, I would feel much more independent. I do hope they teach a few different things that people want to know.

  7. Sorry, can’t agree, it should not be mandatory, except for people with their very first caravan. We live in a nanny state already. I’ve been towing caravans and large boats since I was 17, for well over forty years, why on earth should I have to pay to do a course.( I also held a CAMS motor sport licence many years ago.)
    There is not much that I don’t know about towing, backing, loading, and maintaining caravans and other large trailers.

  8. I agree that drivers that have no experience with towing vehicles should be required to complete a course that will give them the necessary skills to safely tow their van. I have had extensive experience in driving trucks of varying sizes and have towed my caravan for a number of years. I am the holder of a heavy articulated vehicle licence. I am often amazed at the speed that other caravaners pass me on roads that they should be travelling at slower speeds

  9. There should now be a requirement to obtain a Caravan endorsement on your licence. Having been taught how to correctly tow your van, and the knowledge of weights and effects of nature on your van while towing. One big reason vans come unstuck other than incorrect loading is when the LH wheels drop off the black and into the dirt. As a towie picked up what’s left after the driver over corrected trying to get back on the black…..sad end of a dream

  10. I agree with Roger regarding speeding. Go for a drive on any highway where limit is 110 kph and count the number of idiots towing caravans and trailer doing that speed or greater. I am quite happy to jump on the two-way and put out a general call warning all who are listening there is a Galoot loose on the road. Heaven help us all when it goes pear shaped . The actions of a few always creates a kneejerk response.and we all end up paying.

  11. This is good news/bad news! Bad news that accidents are on the increase but good news that Bundaberg Council is trying to rectify the problem! We’ve been offering towing training courses here in WA for over a decade & they are getting more popular all the time. Well done, caravanners!

  12. Yes, I agree with all of the above. Everybody should do or have some experience in either a truck or a course. .Some of these big vans they tow today are akin to an articulated vehicle. Just look at what you go through to get that licence. It appears that is not all that is happening in the Bundaberg/Bargara area. Ever since the former Police Minister for Queensland, Jack Dempsey became Mayor, things are booming.

  13. The idea of a towing course is great but on a smooth go cart track is pointless. People need to be taught what to do when going down a steep hill to a tight bend & just when you think all is honky dory you hit a big bump & immediately everything goes off balance & the vehichle is thrown all over the road. I have been towwing vans full time for 18 years and yes there are some who think travelli g at the speed limit is ok. Everyone just need to just need to know their limits

  14. Probably a good idea to have some sort of trainging requirement but it would need to be required by all states and territories. The comments above seem to point to the fact that all caravan accidents are caused by “fools, drongos or old grey pratts”. It would be good to be able to see some official reports into the accidents involving caravans and then be able to judge what actually are the reasons for such acidents. Maybe that way the real and more regular reasons for accidents could be addressed

  15. Hi folks
    where can i do a towing course in Perth?

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