British Columbia Towing Regulations

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Steve CDN

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Planning to visit British Columbia?? That Canadian Province has very specific regulations governing towing a vehicle behind a motorhome.? The most recent version of the regulations are contained in the attached text file.
 

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Bigrig793

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I don't know how licencing works for out of province or for US citizens coming into British Columbia but I came across an article in a magazine (Trailer Life or RV Gazette) after a certain weight you need more than just a Class 5 drivers licence. I think this is something people should check into before venturing into BC. It reminds me of a trip some guys from work took to BC a couple years ago with there skidoos. They had there machines loaded up on three different trucks with those fancy decks you put in the box of the truck to hold two machines, well one of the trucks was a half ton pickup and he drove 800km just to be turned around by D.O.T. Department Of Transportation because his truck was not rated for the load he had on his truck. Just something to think about.
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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BC (and most of the other provinces) practice license reciprocity with the USA, so if you are legal at home you are legal in BC as well.  Rules may differ for commercial vehicles, but personal use (private) vehicles are ok.
 

pdq

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Hi Steve
thanks for the post
this is something i read, and re-read several times, in decided which tow vehicle was 'right' for us.

Hi Gary
thanks for the post
this is exactly our understanding, based on all the research we did.

regards, pdq
 

Bigrig793

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Gary RV Roamer said:
BC (and most of the other provinces) practice license reciprocity with the USA, so if you are legal at home you are legal in BC as well.  Rules may differ for commercial vehicles, but personal use (private) vehicles are ok.
I new the US did that, but I did not know if it was the same in Canada, funny I should know that of the US but not my own country. In any case if you are a resident of BC they have some different licencing for people towing trailers over a certain weight.
 

Steve CDN

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if you are a resident of BC they have some different licencing for people towing trailers over a certain weight.

Higher class licensing requirements apply to residents of Ontario for towed weight as well as motorhome weight, including a special endorsement for air brakes if applicable.
 

artdecamper

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Gary RV Roamer said:
BC (and most of the other provinces) practice license reciprocity with the USA, so if you are legal at home you are legal in BC as well.  Rules may differ for commercial vehicles, but personal use (private) vehicles are ok.

I believe that only applies to licensing, vehicle weights and braking requirements must still satify the juridiction.  A number of years ago BC authorities where targetting out of province vehicle on weight requirements, and turning some back and forcing some to lighten there loads.
 

Lawrence M

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BC has apparently passed a law that if you are holding up traffic. So many vehicles can't remember how many,I believe 6 but don't quote me on that. You will be fined if you don't pull over at the next convenient spot to let traffic pass.
How they intend to reinforce this not sure.
Anybody know more about this one?
 

Alfa38User

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I'll bet if an officer gets trapped in the lineup or an emergency vehicle complains,  it will be enforced, otherwise, good luck to them!!! If aerial enforcement is used all bets are off...!

I always thought that this was common courtesy but it is not common enough I guess.....
 

Gary RV_Wizard

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BC isn't the only state/province to have a similar requirement. I think it is 5 cars in California, Alaska & Washington have it on designated highways, and there are others as well.

I think the new BC regs give police authority to penalize anybody who needlessly impedes traffic. That would include "left lane hogs", slower than normal speeds in the right lane, and so on. Not sure if there is any specific rule about the number of vehicles that are being held up, or specific reasons. In my [limited] Canadian driving experience, provincial police seem to have a lot more latitude to exercise judgement than US police, and a lot more willingness to be proactive in screening out unsafe or undesirable driving practices.

Article: http://www.vancouversun.com/give+police+power+penalize+left+lane+hogs/10855536/story.html
 

Gord N.

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For those wanting to know, in British Columbia any "Resident" holding a BC Driver's License , pulling an RV with a GVWR of 10,000 lbs. or more must have an endorsement on his/her driver's license.  The requirement is to apply for the endorsement and and take a driving test pulling said RV, with an ICBC (Licensing Authority) examiner. 
You have to demonstrate your ability to handle/back it up/park it.  (I guess there has to be a cut off somewhere but kinda' funny that if it has a GVWR of 9,999 lbs, you don't need the endorsement.
In my view, everyone should have the endorsement, including me, who has been searching for a fifth wheel or trailer to upgrade to that is "under that GVWR", just to avoid having to take the driving test.
Also strange.  That endorsement does NOT give them the legal right to tow a "commercial trailer" ie: horse trailer/ construction trailer, etc.  For that they need a different class of license entirely.
Oh well, it is still the prettiest province in Canada!  :-\
 

Lawrence M

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Gord Nelson said:
For those wanting to know, in British Columbia any "Resident" holding a BC Driver's License , pulling an RV with a GVWR of 10,000 lbs. or more must have an endorsement on his/her driver's license.  The requirement is to apply for the endorsement and and take a driving test pulling said RV, with an ICBC (Licensing Authority) examiner. 
You have to demonstrate your ability to handle/back it up/park it.  (I guess there has to be a cut off somewhere but kinda' funny that if it has a GVWR of 9,999 lbs, you don't need the endorsement.
In my view, everyone should have the endorsement, including me, who has been searching for a fifth wheel or trailer to upgrade to that is "under that GVWR", just to avoid having to take the driving test.
Also strange.  That endorsement does NOT give them the legal right to tow a "commercial trailer" ie: horse trailer/ construction trailer, etc.  For that they need a different class of license entirely.
Oh well, it is still the prettiest province in Canada!  :-\

The special endorsement required. Is it still required if you hold a valid truck licence?
What about people traveling from other provinces? Alberta as far as I know does not have this requirement. Would this mean a person would have to go to BC and stop at the first available testing place?
Can you please help clarify this as I might already be in violation.
 

Gord N.

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Only required for residents of BC who hold only a Class 5 (Standard Drivers Licence).
Here is a link to the specific area of the Regulations.

http://www.icbc.com/driver-licensing/types-licences/Pages/Towing-a-recreational-trailer.aspx
 

Alfa38User

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Drivers Licences from all other Provinces and States in North America will be respected everywhere. There are other things like the rules for  brakes on trailers or double towing, for example, which are not universal and you have to respect those laws as you travel in other jurisdictions.
 

Dorian

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Lawrence M said:
BC has apparently passed a law that if you are holding up traffic. So many vehicles can't remember how many,I believe 6 but don't quote me on that. You will be fined if you don't pull over at the next convenient spot to let traffic pass.
How they intend to reinforce this not sure.
Anybody know more about this one?

True, but that's only if you're doing under the speed limit or know that you slow crawl up hills.  You can't be fined just because you're doing the speed limit and everyone behind you is trying to exceed it.
 

SilvrT

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Lawrence M said:
The special endorsement required. Is it still required if you hold a valid truck licence?
What about people traveling from other provinces? Alberta as far as I know does not have this requirement. Would this mean a person would have to go to BC and stop at the first available testing place?
Can you please help clarify this as I might already be in violation.

Just to clarify this for y'all ... it is not based on the GVWR (Gross Vehicle Weight RATING) but specifically, the GVW (Gross Vehicle WEIGHT) ... in other words, the actual weight of the trailer and it's contents.

This is clearly defined in the ICBC regs and I verified it with them and their examiner when I had my license upgraded to the code 7 endoresement this past June. The regs set the limit at 4600 Kg which is 10141.26 Lbs. The ONLY way you can be sure if you are OK without the endorsement is to have your rig weighed. My 5er, for example, weighs 8900 Lbs totally empty but has a 12,400 GVWR. If I don't put anything in it, I can tow it legally without the endorsement.

From the ICBC link posted above...

"You can use a regular driver's licence to tow a fully-loaded recreational trailer weighing up to 4,600 kg gross vehicle weight (GVW) with a two axle vehicle. "


 

bulldog01

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Does anyone know if there is any interest in , bumper pull trailer with boat on .
Then a fifth wheel hook up made to make it legal. Anyone interested in working on this let me know. I'm planning on making one next month. This way you can take the boat with you and drop it off and go fishing.
send to my email [email protected]
Ben
 

Alfa38User

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Welcome!!

bulldog01 said:
Does anyone know if there is any interest in , bumper pull trailer with boat on .
Then a fifth wheel hook up made to make it legal. Anyone interested in working on this let me know. I'm planning on making one next month. This way you can take the boat with you and drop it off and go fishing.
send to my email [email protected]
Ben

Not sure where  you are talking about but only some of the western states allow towing a boat behind a fifth wheel trailer with a suitably equipped tow vehicle.  This is the only legal way to do it (AFIK) in those states that already permit it. Most states do not permit this. (This is often called "double towing" or "triple towing").

The boat trailer itself is connected to the fifth wheel trailer using a standard ball hitch, not a fifth wheel hitch. Any tow vehicle pulling a fifth wheel is, most often, already equipped with a standard receiver behind the "bumper" as well as the added fifth wheel version in the box.

What do you mean by "Then a fifth wheel hook up made to make it legal." ???
 

Dorian

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If anyone is curious on the actual rules on tandem towing/double towing in Alberta (Which are very similar elsewhere) check this PDF file: https://www.transportation.alberta.ca/Content/docType41/Production/recvehtowguide.pdf
 
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