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-   -   Riding in a 5th wheel...Really! (https://www.irv2.com/forums/f44/riding-in-a-5th-wheel-really-557253.html)

efstewart 10-10-2021 09:15 AM

Riding in a 5th wheel...Really!
 
I know that the idea of riding in the back of a 5th wheel stirs up strong emotions but, how about some fact based advice!

And yes, I have read lots and lots of posts about the dangers of riding in a fifth wheel. Of course, no one mentions the exact cause of a few crashes (mainly travel trailers, a few 5th wheels, also, Class As and Class Cs)

I prefer to hear from those who have done it safely and still do!

I'm downsizing from many years driving a class A, and am leaning towards a new or near new 30-32 foot 5th wheel. A class C is also being considered. I will only buy a top quality built 5th wheel, but not luxury or plush!

1. Northwood- Fox mountain or Grande Ronde
2. Outdoors- Glacier Peak
3. KZ-Durango
4.Keystone-Cougar
5.Grand Design Reflection 150 series

If I do this, I will spend what it takes for a smooth and safe ride (shocks, MORyde system, disc brakes, best hitch system, etc. And the best part is, I need to buy a truck, probably a diesel!

So if I put together the safest and smoothest ride, with your recommendations, can I do this thing safely? And if so, what is your best advice for all of the stuff I need? This would be maybe 2 to 3 times a year with the kids and grandkids, and we are not full-time but more like the snowbird type.

And yes, I am a safe driver, with a 29 year very busy career in law enforcement. I also had prior training in driving a school bus, and tow truck experience ( in college). So I have seen it all, and safety is my number one priority!

Thanks for your advice!

bfisher003 10-10-2021 09:51 AM

You probably do not want to read this, but if safety is your primary concern then do not let your loved ones ride in a fifth wheel trailer! These things pretty much disintegrate in a bad accident. (And we have a Montana fiver.)

Newmar2856 10-10-2021 09:52 AM

I believe you will need to have two way communication between the truck and fifth wheel for this to be legal. Also, our previous fifth wheels didnít have seat belts so that would be something youíd want to add.

The Class C seems like a better option and some advantages would be having the on board generator so you can run the rooftop ACís and fire up a movie for the grandkids while on the move.

Good luck in your search.

TXiceman 10-10-2021 09:53 AM

1 Attachment(s)
Only advice I will give you is to NEVER let a live person ride in you 5er while in motion. No matter how safe a driver you are, the 5th wheel trailer is not designed to any safety standards for impact or roll over.

I can provide photos of a travel trailer that was blown over in a wind and slide down a hill. Totally destroyed. I can also find photos of a 40 foot DRV Mobile Suites that was T-boned and what happened to it. Totally destroyed.
Attachment 345657

This is after we picked up the debris field. It was parked when this happened.

End of discussion.

Ken

GMONEY1 10-10-2021 10:14 AM

You worked 29 years in law enforcement and you are asking this question.

kenandterry 10-10-2021 10:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GMONEY1 (Post 5944711)
You worked 29 years in law enforcement and you are asking this question.

I was thinking the exact same thing.
Why is he even posting the question?
It’s right up there with “can you ride in the back of a pickup truck?”

TXiceman 10-10-2021 10:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GMONEY1 (Post 5944711)
You worked 29 years in law enforcement and you are asking this question.

Just looking for approval and reinforcement of his decision.

Here is the link to the DRV wreck.
https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid...15236846099803

Ken

DJ55 10-10-2021 10:49 AM

It's illegal in most states. Here's an article that lists each state's laws as of 2019: https://www.tripsavvy.com/passengers-in-campers-504228.

RiverBurt 10-10-2021 10:51 AM

Might as well strap the kids to the roof.

efstewart 10-10-2021 10:58 AM

Yes, I know it sounds like a dumb question based upon my experience. But it is interesting that even in California, where I used to live and work, riding in a fifth wheel can be legal and safe.

I drove a class A diesel pusher for years with my family inside, and know that many Class As and Class Cs have been involved in major accidents with negative results.

Does that keep passengers from riding in those? No! Class Cs are notorious for being overweight and top heavy, and can easily rollover and lose traction on curves, and hills. Yet many people from around the world put their loved ones in those.

So, I am just trying to gather the facts on what is needed to keep a newer 5th wheel safe from most hazards while towing. I still have not made up my mind yet! Those of you that are experienced 5vers with safe and quality units, please give me the facts! Remember Sgt Joe Friday from the Dragnet series "All we want are the facts...."

BTW, excessive speed for the conditions is the number one contributor to most RV accidents, inattention or distraction, followed by old or unsafe units, and then propane and frig fires, etc! Am I wrong?

Old-Biscuit 10-10-2021 11:02 AM

And yes, I am a safe driver, with a 29 year very busy career in law enforcement. I also had prior training in driving a school bus, and tow truck experience ( in college). So I have seen it all, and safety is my number one priority!

This would be maybe 2 to 3 times a year with the kids and grandkids,

Let's just go down the list of CONS
*Seat Belts for the kiddies
*Seating for the kiddies.....can't use the couch/reclinders due to slideouts
*Communcations between 5th wheel and truck....2 way radios
*Legality
*Who is going to supervise those kiddies
*The Idea of doing so is ridiculous

List of PROS
NONE!!!


Know anyone that has a 5th wheel.....go take a ride
Not just down the street and back but out on the highway/Interstate
Accelerating, braking, making lane changes, merging etc
*all of those occurring W/O you having a clue they are going to happen


Buy a Suburaban and tow a trailer...kiddies etc ALL inside the Suburban

oscarvan 10-10-2021 11:03 AM

<<And yes, I am a safe driver, with a 29 year very busy career in law enforcement. I also had prior training in driving a school bus, and tow truck experience ( in college). So I have seen it all, and safety is my number one priority!>>

The absence of an accident is not the same as a safe operation.

You should know better than to ask the question. You have most likely seen people get hurt or worse in steel cars. RV's have ZERO crash worthiness, campers even less than motor homes.

My resume was similar to yours, decades of safe driving, 34 years of flying large airplanes without as much as a scratch in the paint. Then all it took was one split second of the wrong thing at the wrong time and the crap hit the fan big time. The damage was instant and total.

Don't do it.

NewBlackDak 10-10-2021 11:05 AM

I have seen many motor home of every class not fare well in accidents. Even if the structure does OK, there is a massive amount of loose debris flying around that causes fatal injuries.

No matter ho safe we try to be on the road, we canít combat distracted, senile, intoxicated and irresponsible drivers that cross lanes, cut you off, drive the wrong way, drive too fast, and cause accidents with their bad decisions.

efstewart 10-10-2021 11:10 AM

Yes, we live in a dangerous world!

Of course I would add a seatbelt, of course I would have parents present. As someone in the news recently said (who I don't care for..) "come on, man"!

Please assume that I have thought this thing out, and will not do it if is not safe, but some of your casual remarks are rather cruel and not well thought out!

Can anyone give me some facts, that a Class C or A with passengers is safer that a 5th wheel? I am not talking about a travel trailer.

Anyone out there that can give me some good positive advice?


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