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Is it illegal to use a tow rope on the motorway?

AndyMac May 17, 2007

  1. AndyMac

    AndyMac Moderator Moderator

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    I always thought it was actually illegal to tow another car with a rope on the motorway, you had to use a fixed bar.
    Can anyone settle this pub argument? Can't find anything concrete on the internet.
    If it isn't it should be. I can't believe it isn't mandatory to have breakdown cover if you take your car on the road. It's £39 a year FFS.
     
  2. Rocko

    Rocko A5 TSFI

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    I always thought it was a solid bar affiar but like you I cant find anything on the net.
     
  3. rodenal

    rodenal Active Member

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    Legally no its not illegal, as long as the other vehicle is secure - i'll see what i can find to back it up lol
     
  4. fallmonk

    fallmonk Turbo Sport

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    yes it is illegal ! (on a motorway at least A & B roads are fine)
    it MUST be a fixed tow on motorways, why you think the AA & RAC etc have these things
     
  5. treblesykes

    treblesykes Member

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    i bloody well hope its illegal
     
  6. Biglockie

    Biglockie Aye you know it makes sense

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    It is either a towing dolly or a fixed bar is ok for the motorway
     
  7. AndyMac

    AndyMac Moderator Moderator

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    So no conclusive proof then?
    The AA/RAC use a solid bar as it's safer, not because it's a legal requirement.
    I only ask as watching Traffic Cops the other day the police helped some girls dad tow their car off the motorway with a rope.
     
  8. ScoobyA4

    ScoobyA4 ding dang do

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    also with a bar, a 2nd driver not required, so the car can be towed driverless. this is why AA / RAC use bars.
     
  9. jdp1962

    jdp1962 Grumpy Old Moderator Staff Member Moderator TFSI Owners Group Team V6 Gold Supporter Team Tornado Audi S4 quattro Black Edition s tronic

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    Has anyone checked the Highway Code?
     
  10. AndyMac

    AndyMac Moderator Moderator

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    I checked it online but all it mentions is towing caravans and trailers
     
  11. Bascule

    Bascule Member

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    You still need a 2nd driver with a bar!!

    The only ones that dont need a 2nd driver are the full a-frame type which lift the front wheels of the 'towed' vehicle off of the road, either on an A-Frame trailer or on a lift on the rear of the towing vehicle.

    With a bar, you definately still need a second driver, to steer, brake if possible etc, but its much easier for the 2nd driver to deal with than a rope.. I bought a spring loaded bar from machine mart last year, and at that time I understood there was legislation coming in to restrict the use of rope in favour of bars - have had a quick look and cant see anything specific on that though.
     
  12. ScoobyA4

    ScoobyA4 ding dang do

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    fair play! confusion is ruling this morning on many things!
     
  13. Beerzo

    Beerzo Masa'warty 3200... Talk To Me!

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    I think a rope could be illegal as can you imagine the carnage of a car that doesnt run trying to stop or steer with no power steering.

    Not to mention what would happen if the rope whipped another car.

    I have herd this before an believe it to be illegal.

    Bit of a grey area this.
     
  14. AndyMac

    AndyMac Moderator Moderator

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    I'm guessing it's not technically illegal, otherwise there would be a definitive statement somewhere (and the cop of TV would not have been able to assist as he did on Traffic Cops the other night), but it bloody well should be.
    I'm sure an insurance company would weasel out of any claim made due to an accident between one car towing another!
     
  15. arthurfuxake

    arthurfuxake Controversial & Contradictive

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    Is there a minimum speed on a motorway? I'm sure 50mph is the min. So, a car towing another car at 50mph would need quite a long rope to ensure a big enough gap for braking. But, I'm sure there is a maximum tow rope length, and it's not long enough for a 50mph tow.
     
  16. AndyMac

    AndyMac Moderator Moderator

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    Yes the minimum is 1.5m, the max is 4.5m i.e. an average car length, which as you say is nt long enough for safe use on a motorway. The only offence listed seems to be use of an unmarked tow rope on a motorway. Crazy.
     
  17. Stringster

    Stringster Missed gear

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    Approached a tow van a couple of days ago that had an old cavalier hitched up. It caught my attention as it was 8pm, raining heavily and it had no lights on at all, just a dim orange light on top. As I came along side I realised it was actually all being towed by a ford galaxy - and towed with a rope.
    The galaxy had hazards on, but these couldnt be seen from behind as they were blocked by the tow truck.
    Not sure how legal that all was on the M25.
     

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