Laws About Riding in Fifth Wheel Trailers

By Pamela-Jean Rice ; Updated June 05, 2017
Fifth Wheel trailer on the road

Recreational vehicles are a staple on American highways. Consumers find a variety of campers competing for their RV dollars. A Fifth Wheel trailer is no exception. You should know the rules of the road, including whether passengers can ride in the Fifth Wheel, before hitting the road.

Passengers Allowed

Arizona, Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Carolina, North Dakota, West Virginia allow riders in Fifth Wheel trailers throughout their state borders, according to Wide World RV Center and Towing World.

California, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota permit riders providing there is an audio or visual device connecting passengers in the Fifth Wheel and the driver of the towing vehicle.

California law requires that Fifth Wheel trailers have safety glass, seat belts and a minimum of one exit that can be opened from the exterior and interior. Oregon requires an exit in the Fifth Wheel that can be opened from the exterior and interior. Pennsylvania and South Dakota require safety glass in the Fifth Wheel trailer.

Wisconsin requires that there be verbal communication connecting passengers in the Fifth Wheel with occupants in the towing vehicle and prohibits children under 12 from riding in the RV unless a a person 16 years or older is riding with the younger children, according to Siren, Wisconsin's, FAQs.

Kansas allows riders 14 or older in the Fifth Wheel.

Fifth Wheel Friendly

Certain states, such as Arizona and California, specifically indicate Fifth Wheel trailers in guidelines regarding not just riding, but also overnight parking with your Fifth Wheel in rest areas and traveling in lanes of traffic, as noted by Woodall's. Complying with each state's rules of the road in relation to driving with a Fifth Wheel is vital to maintaining safety for everyone on the road.

Other Rules

When towing your Fifth Wheel, follow the rules regarding proper towing guidelines, specifically for Fifth Wheel trailers versus the general umbrella of RVs. Consult the manufacturer of your Fifth Wheel trailer to clarify any questions regarding proper attachment so as to be in compliance with the law. Contact the Department of Transportation for each state in which you are traveling to ensure your tow vehicle and Fifth Wheel meet the towing and driving laws and recommended safety rules, especially with riders in the Fifth Wheel.

About the Author

Based in Houston, Texas, Pamela-Jean Rice has been writing real estate articles since 2007. Her articles have appeared in local specialty magazines, including "Old Town Spring Magazine." Rice completed her real estate coursework at Champions School of Real Estate in 2003.