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Double towing

by Carl Lundquist

We all want to take along additional toys; A 5th wheel owner will sometimes want to be able to tow a boat, or a motorhome owner will want to tow a boat in addition to a car or SUV. Can this be done legally? Forum staffer Carl Lundquist explains it in simple terms.

Generally speaking, the only states that will permit a double tow with a 5th wheel are flat Great Plains states. The mountain west and Pacific coast states tend to forbid any double tow by a non-commercial licensee. For example, California flatly forbids any double tow by a "passenger vehicle" and permits commercial class-A licensees double tow only if they have a special endorsement. Since an illegal double tow is an easy ticket for a state highway patrol officer to write, you are going to have to check out the provisions for every state that you enter.

Towing regulations can be found at state DMV websites. Trailer Life's Campground Directory has a chart of state RV provisions, but their listing for triple tows (what we're calling double tow) is singularly unhelpful, being a mass of often cryptic footnotes.