Jerry cans on rear of caravans

Submitted: Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 17:15
ThreadID: 117021 Views:8922 Replies:6 FollowUps:11
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Hi could anyone tell me if jerry cans are allowed on the rear of caravans
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Reply By: TomH - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:07

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:07
Depends whats in them Get hit in the rear with them full of petrol would get interesting.

Some people will say you shouldnt put ANYTHING on the back of a van as it alters its stability.

Its not illegal Just very unwise.
AnswerID: 549776

Follow Up By: Member - johnat - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:52

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:52
And that would explain why so many van manufacturers put jerry can carriers there?
If, and it's a big if, the weight of the content of the cans is offset by other loading forward of the axle, it'll make little difference to the trim of the van, surely!
Petrol might be a problem, but diesel should present no difficulty. Water, almost certainly not a problem!
FollowupID: 835191

Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 21:17

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 21:17
Caravan instability is more about yaw inertia than balance and stuff on the back is really bad for that, even when 'ballanced' by stuff on the front.
And the longer the van, the more serious the problem.

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Follow Up By: Nomadic Navara - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 23:45

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 23:45
A few papers for you to read:

Caravan and Tow Vehicle Dynamics

Caravan Dynamics

Making caravans stable

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Reply By: Batt's - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:49

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:49
I done a quick search and this is the best piece of information I have found for carrying jerry cans.
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Follow Up By: The Landy - Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 08:17

Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 08:17
Thanks Batt’s

A useful read, thanks for sharing.

Although I do note it suggests a maximum fuel capacity of 250 litres. I’m not sure of the correctness of this. My vehicle has a 260 litre tank capacity in two separate tanks and this has been engineered and certified to NSW registration requirements.

I did try to find a reference on the NSW Maritime but couldn’t see anything that related to actual maximum capacity.

Cheers, Baz – The Landy
FollowupID: 835267

Reply By: pop2jocem - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:56

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 18:56
G'day Bob,

As said it's not the smartest thing to do, adding extra weight on the rear of your van. It can effect the balance. Having said that, you do see a lot of vans with all sorts of things on the back bumper.

Also I think it also depends on what is in the jerry cans or containers.
Water, although the heaviest, would be from a weight angle the worst, but from a safety angle the best.
Petrol, the lightest would be the most dangerous and maybe illegal.
Diesel, probably somewhere in between from both the weight and safety angles.

As far as being allowed, or legal, I think the best people to ask would be the relevant transport authority in your state. Certain rules and regulations can vary between states. As an example, I have heard that in NSW, you need a system to monitor the breakaway battery voltage if your van is so equipped. Other states, as far as I know, have no such requirement at present.

AnswerID: 549783

Reply By: Bigfish - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 19:26

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 19:26
I am under the impression that any dangerous good carried must be protected and not in an exposed position. To me anyone carrying petrol on the rear bar of a trailer/camper or caravan is just a plain idiot. If someone was to hit you in the rear and as a result the petrol ignited you would be find yourself in 7 sorts of sh@t.
Common sense tells you its a potential disaster waiting to happen. Make a decent frame/holder and put it on the a frame of the towed vehicle. Just because your vehicle may have Gerry can holders on its rear bar does not mean it is safe to carry petrol. Water or diesel are way safer and the manufacturer will never tell you to carry petrol.
AnswerID: 549788

Follow Up By: Phillipn - Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 22:11

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2015 at 22:11
I did a check with Qld Transport, Only diesel to be carried on back of vans and the container must be between the bumper bar and the van or vehicle.

Petrol and gas are a not allowed on the back.
FollowupID: 835198

Follow Up By: Batt's - Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 01:26

Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 01:26
So caravans have a gas cylinder or 2 on the drawbar that are potentially always in the firing line from side impacts etc but that's ok. When you go to the servo to get fuel for your mower where do you put the tank so it's not dangerous in the boot so the fumes can possibly leak into the cab or on the passengers floor if you don't have a ute. Fuel can be dangerous wherever you store either under your car in the fuel tank or in a jerry on the rear but if someone went to the trouble to mount a sturdy bracket to make it as safe as possible then at least they have done their best and if they are rear ended then what ever repercussions come from that is only the result of the idiot behind you and you would probably be fine in the eyes of the law.
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Follow Up By: Bigfish - Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 09:12

Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 09:12
Batt..For a start gas cylinders are a hell of a lot thicker than the plastic that Gerry cans are made from. Even the steel Gerry cans aren,t thick. Being mounted in steel holders at the front of the van and on the a frame is probably the safest place where they could be mounted. Yes when I get fuel for the mower I put it in a 5 litre plastic fuel can, securely tightened , placed in empty milk crate in rear of car and driven all of 3 kilometres home!! Even then I am well aware of the fuel and believe me, I think I am most other people, and don't really want it in the car but have no option. The chances of a side impact on a caravan are way lower than a rear ender. Yes, if some idiot runs into you , ruptures the petrol containers and he and his family are incinerated(has happened before), then at least you can say...not my problem, I had a solid bar to mount them on and that's the best I could do....

Yeah right..
FollowupID: 835219

Follow Up By: Peter_n_Margaret - Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 11:04

Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 11:04
I understand that regulations changed recently to require gas bottles to be inside the A frame rather than hanging over the edges.
Not retrospective though.

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Follow Up By: Member - Blue M - Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 01:04

Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 01:04
To me anyone carrying petrol on the rear bar of a "trailer/camper or caravan" is just a plain idiot.

I may be a little off track here, but what do all "Petrol" Toyota & Nissan wagons carry in their jerry can holders on the rear bumpers.
Are they only full of water? , if not, are they "just plain idiots" as well.
Maybe there is a difference that I am unaware of.
Just curious.


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Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 07:46

Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 07:46

I purchased a new Goldstream Storm last November, and asked for a dual Jerrycan carrier and twin 9kg gas bottles to be mounted on the A frame.
No problem with engineering or safety requirements and it works well.

The van also has twin Jerrycan holders at the rear of the van, between the spare wheel and rear of van.
This located is labeled "for water carrying purposes only", but I am of the belief that this was done by the manufacturer as an Australian Design Rule change was imminent. As far as I am aware, no such change has been implemented at this stage, but I only carry 40l of drinking water at the rear anyway.

The reason for the carriers at the front, is so I can transfer the fuel (diesel) from the Jerrycans to the vehicle tank without removing them, by use of a Tanami Pump, an ingenious device to save the back from lifting heavy fuel containers.


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FollowupID: 835265

Reply By: Varmint - Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 19:56

Thursday, Mar 12, 2015 at 19:56
Not sure of the rules about fuel cans but I was following a van with water container on the back blocking out the left hand indicator
AnswerID: 549849

Reply By: Batt's - Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 02:46

Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 02:46
Hope the replies you received helped you make a decision about fitting jerry cans lol. If you do fit them depending on what you store in them be careful where you drive because you may end up with your wheel clamped and protesters circling your van like Indians on the hunt.
AnswerID: 549858

Follow Up By: Bigfish - Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 09:25

Friday, Mar 13, 2015 at 09:25
Seeing as Bob Boots took the time to ask questions on here and got the appropriate answers..I,m betting that if he fits Gerry can holders to rear of van he wont carry petrol in them. As others have may soon be illegal to do so. At the very least it is dangerous.
FollowupID: 835271

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