Top tips for safe van driving
16 May 2019

Driving a van isn’t drastically different from driving a car. Despite that, some of us get a bit worked up when it comes to getting behind the wheel of a bigger vehicle.

While most driving rules are the same across cars and vans, there are some slight differences that you should be aware of before you start your journey.

That’s why we have compiled this handy list of top tips for safe van driving, to help you get started.

Ready, set… then go

It sounds obvious but the driving position in a van is different to a car. Your seat may feel higher and you will lack a rear-view mirror… Don’t panic though. Your large door side mirrors will more than compensate.

Did you know, one of the biggest safety risks when driving a van for a long time is incorrect sitting positions? It can massively impact your journey, so make sure you take the time to get yourself in a comfortable position.

Check the tech

It’s important to know the features of the vehicle you are driving. Make sure you know where to find the lights and wipers… Simple things like this could save you precious time in dangerous driving conditions. It’s all about staying safe.

How high?

No matter where you’re travelling to or from, you’re likely to come across some low tunnels and tight carparks.

Make sure before you set off, that you have learned the dimensions of your van. This will give you that extra piece of mind when it comes to tackling corners and tunnels.

You can’t always rely on your judgement being accurate. It’s worth learning measurements ahead of time, to avoid getting into any sticky situations.

Bottom heavy

You should always make sure any heavy items are safely secured at the bottom of your vehicle. Tying them up will stop them from damaging any other items, but on top of that, it will also prevent your van from becoming destabilised in transit.


Van brakes are designed to halt your vehicle… and that vehicle could be carrying a very heavy load... That means the brakes might feel a little bit over-responsive when your van is empty. As long as you're aware of potential over-sensitivity, you will be absolutely fine.

Slow and steady

Always be aware of speed limits. Ultimately, they’re there for the safety of everyone, so take time to check them out.

Did you know that vans have different speed limits to cars? On a single carriageway, the national speed limit sign means 50mph for vans, and on dual carriageways it means 60mph… so that’s 10mph slower than for cars.

Adhering to speed limits will not only keep you safe but will also help you avoid the risk of any pesky fines.

Don’t be scared!

Driving a van shouldn’t be a scary experience. It really isn’t as daunting as you might think. If you’ve got any concerns don’t hesitate to get in contact with our colleagues in our Shrewsbury and Telford branches – they’re experts in van hire!

To find out more about van rental, why not give us a ring on 01743 770035 for our Shrewsbury team or 01952 570057 for our Telford branch.