Building a trailer may at first not seem like a difficult task, but constructing a trailer that meets regulations, is structurally sound and safe requires some attention to detail. This post is the first in a series of looking at common mistakes made in trailer construction and how you can avoid them.
SAFETY CHAIN RATING
Trailers must be fitted with safety chains that are marked in accordance with the relevant standard. Generally, this rating is stamped on the chain link as pictured above. Failure to use rated chain makes the trailer non-compliant and potentially unsafe. Buy chain from a reputable trailer parts supplier and ensure that it is clearly marked to the ATM rating of your trailer.
SAFETY CHAINS ATTACHMENT
Safety chain attachment points must be located as near as practicable to the tow coupling. Where two points of attachment are required (above 2500kg ATM), they must be mounted one on either side of the centerline of the drawbar.
Safety chain attachment should be such that their attachment points cannot make contact with the ground in the event of the trailer becoming unhitched (unlike the one below). If the chain is to be welded to the chassis there are minimum welding requirement to ensure that the chain is adequately attached.
The key to building a safe and compliant trailer is to be well informed of regulations and sound trailer construction practice. There are many resources available but not all will comply to the requirements of your registration authority.
If you have any queries or comments we’d love to hear from you, please contact us