Back Roads: How Towing Services Can Be A Lifesaver

Back Roads: How Towing Services Can Be A Lifesaver

Towing Safety Tips

Brittany Howell

Breaking down in the middle of nowhere can be any driver's worst nightmare, and that's why you should consider taking out roadside assist insurance, just in case.  However, it's well-worth knowing how to tow a vehicle safely in case you need to help out a friend who doesn't have access to a towing service.

Towing safety tips

Before you even think about towing a vehicle, have a good look over the tow rope or towing pole you plan to use to make sure it is in good condition with no weak or damaged areas.  Also, remember that cars following you will be unaware that the vehicle in front of them is being towed, so you must display an 'On Tow' sign in the rear window. 

You must leave the ignition switched on in the towed vehicle; otherwise the steering lock will be engaged.  Remember that, with the engine switched of, the towed vehicle won't have power steering or braking, making it much heavier to steer and slower to respond to pressure on the brake pedal.

Tips for towing

  1. It's extremely important that you drive slowly when towing a vehicle.  This gives the driver of the towed vehicle much more time to react when necessary.  
  2. When braking, do so very gently and well in advance of your intended stopping point.  This gives the towed driver plenty of time to see your brake lights come on and apply their brakes.  The towing pole is not designed to act as an augmentation to the vehicle's brakes.  
  3. When moving off, release the clutch very gently; sudden jerking on the tow rope is a common cause of breakage.  
  4. You will need to remember to indicate turns earlier than you would ordinarily.  This gives the towed driver and other road users plenty of notice of your intentions.  
  5. Remember that the steering and braking capacity of the towed vehicle is much reduced because the engine is not running.  For this reason it's really important that you don't change direction or manoeuvre suddenly.  

Tips for towed drivers

  1. Be very vigilant and aware of what the towing vehicle is doing so that you can prepare in advance for approaching manoeuvres and try to coordinate your moves and signals accordingly.  
  2. Keep your distance from the towing vehicle and apply light pressure to the brakes at all times.  This ensures that a light tension is maintained on the tow rope or pole at all times to minimise jolting.  It's also important that you keep the rope from becoming slack and dragging along the road, which could cause damage or breakage.

In conclusion

Taking out a roadside assistance policy is the best way of ensuring that you make it home safely in the event that your car breaks down.  However, if you do end up towing someone else, follow the above tips for a safe and successful experience.


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About Me
Back Roads: How Towing Services Can Be A Lifesaver

Hi there! Brenton here. I'm a bit of an adventurer and I've actually driven around Australia three times. From the Nullarbor Plains to the Gulf, I have driven on some seriously bad roads. After my first trip, I learnt that despite my bush mechanic skills, I can't always fix vehicles. I've become quite an amateur expert on how to avoid breakdowns as well as the best towing services to access when all else fails. I have lots of other mates who like going off the beaten track and I'm always giving them tips in case they need to be towed for assistance. Australia is a vast country with lots of isolated patches, so it's best to be prepared. I hope this blog gives you an insight into the best towing services and shows you how they can be a lifesaver in desperate circumstances. Please drive in!