Being caught unprepared while camping can be a frightening experience, especially when it comes to your safety. Anything can happen while camping, so you must have several safety tools available. We’ve created a list of our must-have safety devices to help you stay safe during your next camping adventure.
Let’s take a look!
Is RV Camping Dangerous?
Anytime you camp, you have a chance of a mishap. Whether hammering in a tent stake or splitting firewood for the evening fire, accidents happen. It doesn’t matter whether you go camping in a tent or an RV; sooner or later, someone may get hurt.
However, if you have the proper safety devices, injuries can be prevented. Worst case, the injured camper can get back to camping quickly.
If the incident requires professional medical attention, you’ll have what you need to help get them by until you can get help. Camping is one of those situations where you plan for the worst but hope for the best.
13 Most Important RV Safety Devices You Need for Your Camper
No matter the activity, safety should always be of the greatest concern. Serious accidents can occur when you do not prioritize safety. Do what you can to prepare for accidents. Here are some things you should have on hand.
1. Fire Extinguisher
Did you know it’s legally required for RVs to come with fire extinguishers if you buy them from a dealer? Having a fire extinguisher easily accessible can save you and your RV, especially in the kitchen.
Fires can quickly erupt and ignite your RV. When out camping in rural or hard-to-reach places, it can take a long time for emergency services to arrive. An RV fire extinguisher can help put out a fire before it becomes a more serious situation.
- First Alert's HOME1 FE1A10GR Fire Extinguisher is UL rated 1-A:...
- Multipurpose fire extinguisher fights wood, paper, trash,...
- First Alert’s Rechargeable Fire Extinguisher can be recharged...
2. Carbon Monoxide Detector
Carbon monoxide is a silent killer. This deadly gas makes a carbon monoxide detector another legal requirement when purchasing a new RV. If you buy a used one, you should ensure the carbon monoxide detector works and isn’t out of date.
Carbon monoxide comes from propane, oil, and natural gas appliances. RVs often use these types of appliances for heating and other amenities. However, the placement of a generator can also release carbon monoxide into your RV. If someone runs a generator near you, make sure the exhaust blows away from you.
- CO detector with alert modes & 2 LED lights that pulse for power...
- Electrochemical sensing technology - CO alarm detects the...
- Protects during a power failure - CO detector operates on 3-AA...
Pro Tip: If you’re traveling in your RV this winter, make sure to have these Top 13 Winter Road Trip Essentials.
3. Fire Alarm
Fire alarms are also another required safety device. While these alarms can go off notifying your fellow campers that you’re making dinner, they’re essential for your safety. At the same time, you may want to pull the battery out of your detector to avoid false alarms while cooking, but don’t do it.
A fire alarm with no battery is useless. Plus, you may forget to put the battery back in. A fire alarm can give you and your fellow campers time to escape safely.
- Fire and CO detector in 1 unit with alert modes, LED lights, and...
- Ionization sensor technology - smoke detector detects invisible...
- Protects during a power failure - combo smoke and CO alarm...
4. Gas Stop
If a major leak occurs, the Gas Stop will shut off the flow of propane automatically. You won’t have to stress about it leaking into your RV or wasting gas.
- 100% Propane Shut Off in the event of a major leak! Ideal for...
- Can be used to easily test for minor Propane leaks
- Gas level indicator so you can make sure you don't run out of gas
5. Trailer Brake Controller
Too many RVers worry about whether their truck can tow a large RV but forget about its ability to stop it. Having a brake controller in your truck enables your RV’s brakes to assist your vehicle with stopping.
Without this tool, you can prematurely wear out your brakes or overheat them while going down a long decline.
Trailer brake controllers also help maintain control of your trailer. Giving a soft squeeze of your trailer brake can greatly improve your ability to handle different towing situations.
If you bought a tow vehicle with a tow package, you’d likely have a brake controller pre-installed.
6. Sway Control & Weight Distribution Hitch
Even if you have a big enough truck for your camper, having the proper hitch can help keep you safe. Sway control and weight distribution hitches work for travel trailers.
When set up correctly, they help balance the weight of an RV between the tow vehicle and the trailer’s axles.
Too much trailer weight on the truck may cause you to lose traction on your front tires, which results in a loss of control. However, having too much weight on the trailer can cause your rig to sway as you drive.
Setting up these hitches requires taking the proper measurements. If you purchase new, the dealership might charge you a small fee to set up and install your hitch for you.
Once it’s set up, you won’t need to make any major adjustments unless you change the heights of your trailer or tow vehicle.
7. Tire Pressure Monitoring System
Tire blowouts commonly happen when RVing. Using a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) can help you keep an eye on the status of your tires. These safety devices can typically alert you within seconds of a leak occurring or of a tire failure.
None of these devices can prevent a blowout from occurring, but the faster they can alert you, the faster you can stop. This can help minimize any damage to your RV and help avoid a more serious situation.
8. RV Backup Camera
An RV backup camera can create a much safer experience for you and those around you. It can help you avoid hitting any hidden tree limbs, picnic tables, or other campground items you may not notice when backing into your site.
Some RVers can wire their backup cameras so that they can turn them on while towing. Doing so can help minimize blind spots and increase the safety of everyone on the road.
9. Battery Monitor
A typical RV 12V battery system runs essential appliances like lights and fans. Even a propane fridge requires a minimal amount of charge. However, if you go boondocking or dry camping, a battery monitor lets you know detailed information regarding your RV battery bank’s state of charge and how long it’ll last.
You don’t want to find yourself with a dead RV battery. If you do, you’ll be unable to use many of your RV’s essential functions, including the water pump, fans, or lights.
Some battery monitors even connect to the internet and can allow you to monitor your RV battery from thousands of miles away.
10. Surge Protector
You likely protect the large and expensive appliances in your home from power surges by using a surge protector. So it’s best to think of your RV as one of the largest electrical appliances you’ve ever purchased. When you plug your RV into a power pedestal, you never know when a spike might occur.
A large electrical surge can do a tremendous amount of damage to your RV’s electrical system and the electronics inside your RV. One quick power surge can damage expensive electronics that could cost thousands of dollars to repair or replace.
Pro Tip: Surge protectors can be life savors, so we uncovered What Is the Best RV Power Surge Protector?
11. Motion-Sensing Exterior Lights
Motion-sensing exterior lights are a great addition to any camping setup. It doesn’t matter whether you go boondocking in the middle of a national forest or set up camp in the middle of a state park. These lights can alert you when anyone comes close to your campsite or RV.
While these lights can’t recognize the difference between an animal or a person, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. You want to have an early alert that something has come near your RV. That way, you can prepare the proper response and not be caught off guard.
Additionally, light is a great deterrent. Once triggered, it makes the RV seem awake and much less of an easy target.
12. First Aid Kit
First aid kits can help you address minor ailments while camping or help provide care during a more serious situation until medical professionals arrive. It doesn’t matter whether you need to remove a splinter or stop bleeding; first aid kits can save the day.
- New design: 2-in-1 Premium First Aid Emergency Kit comes with 215...
- Security & Reliability - Manufactured from the highest of quality...
- Durable and Lightweight - The bag is strong, compact and easy to...
However, don’t forget that a first aid kit is useless if not adequately stocked. Keep an eye on your inventory so you can purchase additional supplies to avoid running out. You can get plenty of kits online that can easily stow away in your RV or tow vehicle.
13. Roadside Safety Kit
A roadside safety kit can help you if you ever find yourself stranded on the side of the road. Flares, reflectors, and even some tools for doing roadside repairs come in handy.
You can’t always carry every tool you’ll need in this kit, but having a generous supply of basic ones can help get you back on the road in a pinch.
Do I Need a Security System for My RV?
Whether or not you need a security system for your RV is a personal decision. Some RVers install these systems to provide a bit of comfort when sleeping. However, other RVers take other precautions to keep themselves safe.
If you plan on using your RV in remote locations, you might want to invest in a security system. On the other hand, if you plan to spend most of your time in state parks or RV parks, it might make you more comfortable knowing that fellow RVers will likely keep an eye out for you.
Stay Safe in Your RV Camper with These Easy Tools
Taking safety seriously while camping is important. Having these tools and knowing how to use them is essential. You should practice using your safety devices so you know how to use them during an emergency.
What safety devices have saved the day for you while RVing? Drop a comment below!
Become A Mortons On The Move Insider
Join 10,000+ other adventurers to receive educating, entertaining, and inspiring articles about RV Travel Destinations, RV Gear, and Off-Grid Living to jump-start your adventures today!
Read More From The Mortons: