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What is the maximum distance a load may extend in front of a car?

  • A. 1m in front of the bumper

  • B. 3m in front of the front edge of the front seat

  • C. Nowhere in front of the bumper

  • D. 3m in front of the bumper

  •  
    The correct answer is B
     
    Correct. You can carry a load that extends 4m behind the rear axle and 3m in front of the front edge of the front seat.
     
 
 
 

Maximum length carrying a load that extends forward

You can carry a load on your car that extends three metres in front of the front edge of the front seat. For vehicles with a short bonnet, this could extend more than one metre in front of the front bumper, in which case it will need a white, red, yellow or orange fluorescent flag tied to it. The flag must be at least 40cm x 30cm, and the load must not interfere with your view as a driver, or touch the ground.

Overhanging loads

The practical restrictions on the length are there for public safety: any load extending from the front of the car will follow a wider arc when turning. This means that as you turn into an intersection you have to take into account where the front edge of the load is so that you don't hit pedestrians, other road users or road furniture close to the edge of the road like street lights.

The extra length should also be taken into account when you are following another vehicle, and when you pull up behind another vehicle at traffic lights or at an intersection. Remember to leave a bit more gap.