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Driving Licences/American Motorhomes



 
 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old August 2nd 03, 09:49 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
AH
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Posts: 20
Default Driving Licences/American Motorhomes

There seems to be some serious anomolies regarding the driving of large
American motorhomes on a normal car licence.

I was under the impression that anything over 7.5 ton required an HGV,
however a couple of well known dealers have told me otherwise although
another handful of dealers have completely disputed that.

There was an article in the latest American RV Magazine (UK published) that
seemed to suggest that a mtorhome of any size could be driven on a normal
car licence.

Can anyone shed any light on this please. I will obviously be speaking to
lawyers, police and dvlc before making a decision to either upgrade or take
HGV but I suspect getting an absolute definitive answer will prove
impossible

Thanks

AH




  #2 (permalink)  
Old August 2nd 03, 10:31 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Geoff Lane
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Posts: 870
Default Driving Licences/American Motorhomes

"AH" wrote in :

Can anyone shed any light on this please. I will obviously be speaking
to lawyers, police and dvlc before making a decision to either upgrade
or take HGV but I suspect getting an absolute definitive answer will
prove impossible


You can find the definitive answer on the DVLA website, from where you
can download their publication, "D100 - What you need to know about
driving licenses". Near the back of the booklet is a table of what every
class of driving license covers. Somewhere near that are some extra bits
that apply to licenses obtained before 1997.

From the DVLA book, if you passed your license after 1996, you need to
take additional test(s) to drive anything over 3.5 tonnes. If you passed
before 1997, you can drive most vehicles up to 7.5 tonnes (provided it's
not for hire or reward) and in combination with a trailer up to a gross
train weight of 8.25 tonnes. AIUI, anything over that requires additional
license classes, including monster motor homes.

However, I'm only giving my interpretation of the DVLA info -- so I
suggest you download your own copy of D100 and read the info first hand.

HTH,

--
Geoff Lane
Cornwall, UK
  #3 (permalink)  
Old August 3rd 03, 03:42 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Robin Dumpleton
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Posts: 27
Default Driving Licences/American Motorhomes

My pre 1996 licence gives 7.5 tonne with max trainweight to 12 tonne and no
restriction to hire and reward i.e. a 7.5 tonne flat with drawbar trailer

Robin

"Geoff Lane" wrote in message
...
"AH" wrote in :

Can anyone shed any light on this please. I will obviously be speaking
to lawyers, police and dvlc before making a decision to either upgrade
or take HGV but I suspect getting an absolute definitive answer will
prove impossible


You can find the definitive answer on the DVLA website, from where you
can download their publication, "D100 - What you need to know about
driving licenses". Near the back of the booklet is a table of what every
class of driving license covers. Somewhere near that are some extra bits
that apply to licenses obtained before 1997.

From the DVLA book, if you passed your license after 1996, you need to
take additional test(s) to drive anything over 3.5 tonnes. If you passed
before 1997, you can drive most vehicles up to 7.5 tonnes (provided it's
not for hire or reward) and in combination with a trailer up to a gross
train weight of 8.25 tonnes. AIUI, anything over that requires additional
license classes, including monster motor homes.

However, I'm only giving my interpretation of the DVLA info -- so I
suggest you download your own copy of D100 and read the info first hand.

HTH,

--
Geoff Lane
Cornwall, UK



  #4 (permalink)  
Old August 4th 03, 09:17 AM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Andy R
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Posts: 71
Default Driving Licences/American Motorhomes


"AH" wrote in message
...
There seems to be some serious anomolies regarding the driving of large
American motorhomes on a normal car licence.

I was under the impression that anything over 7.5 ton required an HGV,
however a couple of well known dealers have told me otherwise although
another handful of dealers have completely disputed that.

There was an article in the latest American RV Magazine (UK published)

that
seemed to suggest that a mtorhome of any size could be driven on a normal
car licence.


Some years ago I worked for a company which did LGV/PCV training and we
hoped to get some additional business by training owners of American
motorhomes for the LGV licence because their vehicles were over 7.5t. After
quite a bit of research we never got anywhere, although the DVLA said an LGV
licence was required everybody else interpreted the legislation differently,
including several insurance companies, a couple of police forces and a
lawyer we employed to look at it. IIRC it hinged on the fact that the
legislation refers to goods vehicles and as motorhomes (including converted
coaches) are not goods vehicles then the legislation didn't apply.
Apparently it gets a bit greyer with newer car licences and the 3.5t limit
but people who passed before 1997 (or whenever it was) have no problems.

We gave up pushing the point because there was no way of convincing a
motorhome owner he needed the licence when everyone around him said he
didn't.

Can anyone shed any light on this please. I will obviously be speaking to
lawyers, police and dvlc before making a decision to either upgrade or

take
HGV

Forget plod, they haven't got a clue. DVLA have more idea but are only
interpretting the regs as they see fit, the best bet as you say is an expert
in the law. the problem is that a lawyer will cost you far more than an LGV
licence and wont teach you how to drive a large vehicle.

but I suspect getting an absolute definitive answer will prove
impossible

Probably, but the most important thing if you decide not to do the LGV
licence is to make sure the insurance company are happy. It's one thing to
get nicked for driving whilst improperly licenced (extremely unlikely cos
the law's so grey) but quite another to find your insurance is invalid just
when you need it most.

Rgds

Andy R


  #5 (permalink)  
Old August 5th 03, 10:37 AM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Andy R
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 71
Default Driving Licences/American Motorhomes


"Phil" wrote in message
...
On Mon, 4 Aug 2003 09:17:04 +0100, "Andy R" wrote:

IIRC it hinged on the fact that the
legislation refers to goods vehicles and as motorhomes (including

converted
coaches) are not goods vehicles then the legislation didn't apply.

My twin-axle Hymermobil (3.5 tonnes) has a Taxation Class: Private
HGV on the registration document V5

I would have thought that this was unoquivically a goods vehicle in
the eyes of the law.

Yes, indeed, as far as taxation class goes but this has little bearing on
the licence required to drive it. A 70 seater coach can be taxed as plg
(private/light goods) if it's not used for hire and reward but it's clearly
neither light nor goods.

Rgds

Andy R


  #6 (permalink)  
Old August 6th 03, 09:00 AM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
Phil
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 113
Default Driving Licences/American Motorhomes

On Tue, 5 Aug 2003 10:37:57 +0100, "Andy R" wrote:

Yes, indeed, as far as taxation class goes but this has little bearing on
the licence required to drive it. A 70 seater coach can be taxed as plg
(private/light goods) if it's not used for hire and reward but it's clearly
neither light nor goods.

Mmmmmm!

I wonder if this has been tested in the couts.

Phil
  #7 (permalink)  
Old August 7th 03, 12:38 PM posted to uk.rec.motorcaravans
David Miller
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 19
Default Driving Licences/American Motorhomes

Phil said "My twin-axle Hymermobil (3.5 tonnes) has a Taxation Class:
Private
HGV on the registration document V5. I would have thought that this
was unoquivically a goods vehicle in the eyes of the law".

Not at all unequivocal, I'm afraid, Phil! I can give a specific
example of why the V5 class says NOTHING about the licence required to
drive: two of my vehicles have had on the V5, and the licence disk,
the class "Historic vehicle" (ie one manufactured before 1973, and now
able to be licensed for nil pounds a year). When I first got a V5
that said that, I thought how silly not to say historic WHAT-KIND of
vehicle, but there you go. As it happens, both mine have been
lightweight 3-wheelers, so I haven't worried too much about the weight
limits of my licence....
 



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