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10 Trailering Safety Tips
WRITTEN BY: Exiss Aluminum Trailers, Inc. [April 2000]
Before setting off down the road with your horse in tow, it is extremely important to check your trailer for safety hazards. By checking your trailer before each loading, you can avoid emergency mis-haps and life-threatening accidents. Print this page, keep it in an easily accessible place in your trailer, and use it as a reference each time you trailer a horse.
1 - Tires:
Evaluate tire tread for uneven wear, bulges and worn spots. Check tire pressure to make sure it matches the manufacturer's suggested pressure.
2 - Flooring:
Carefully inspect your floor for corrosion or rotting, depending on your floor surface. Check for trapped moisture under floor mats. Replace or repair floor surface as needed.
3 - Interior of Trailer:
Check for discoloration, rust, loose bolts or uneven surfaces that could gouge a horse's hide or eye.
4 - Wiring:
Inspect the wires for damage, making sure that all lights work when hooked up to your vehicle. Also check out the wiring to your emergency brake.
5 - Windows:
Your horse should have good ventilation. Make sure that all windows open and slide easily.
6 - Latches and Metalwork:
Your ramp springs, latches, safety chains and bars should all be in good working order. Repair or replace those that aren't.
7 - Hitch:
Whether gooseneck or bumper pull, it should be fully operational, and locked for security when not in use.
8 - Wheel Bearings:
They should be cleaned, repacked and seals replaced every 3,000 miles.
9 - Brakes:
Brakes should be examined on a new trailer after 200 miles, then adjusted after 3,000 miles. Pads should be assessed for wear and brake drums for scoring. Hydraulic brake lines should be inspected for leaks.
10 - Emergency Trailer Brake Check:
Make sure it engages properly.