Safely Hitched

Keep safe on the road by following your vehicle manufacturer's towing requirements.

The boating experience begins long before you hit the water; it begins the moment you hook your Sea Ray and boat trailer to the hitch on your vehicle. Remember the following things for safe and problem-free hitching.

• Towing in general can be an easy process. But before starting any of the preparations at home, take your vehicle and your boat into a professional for a service check. Nothing beats an expert eye.

• Safe boating doesn’t begin at the dock; it begins when you hook the boat trailer to the hitch. Safety and security for yourself, your passengers and those sharing the road with you on the way to the boat ramp should take precedence over everything else.

• Make sure the trailer is properly attached to the hitch ball, the latch is locked, the safety chains are attached and the trailer lights work properly. But most importantly, make sure your tow vehicle is properly rated and equipped to tow the boat/trailer you are about to take to the water.

• Nearly every pickup, SUV and crossover has very specific equipment requirements when it comes to how big a trailer it can tow and how that trailer can be towed. These are clearly noted in the vehicle’s owner’s manual and on the vehicle manufacturer’s online towing guides. If you are towing and the tow vehicle isn’t properly equipped per those guidelines, you jeopardize your own safety and the safety of those around you.

As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure—and priceless when it comes to your well-being.

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