What do I do if my trailer begins to sway while towing?

by Airstream, Inc.

If sway occurs, the following techniques should be used:

1. Slow down immediately, remove your foot from the accelerator. Avoid using the tow vehicle brakes unless there is a danger of collision. Reduce speed gradually whenever possible. If you can do so safely, use the brake hand controller to gently and progressively apply the trailer brakes. This will help to keep the vehicles aligned. Practice using the brake hand controller on a deserted parking lot. Do not wait until an emergency occurs before using it. Location of the brake hand controller is important and should be made easily accessible

2. Steer as little as possible while maintaining control of the vehicle. Because of natural reaction lag time, quick steering movements to counter trailer sway will actually cause increased sway and loss of control. Keep both hands on the wheel. Hold the wheel as straight as possible until stability is regained

3. Once the swaying is under control, stop as soon as possible. Check tire pressures, cargo weight distribution, and look for any signs of mechanical failure. Travel at reduced speeds that permit full control until the problem can be identified and corrected.

Do not jam on the brakes or attempt to press on the accelerator to speed your way out of the fishtailing. Both actions make the situation worse and could cause severe injury or death.


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