We continue our road trip down regulation road. Next stop caravan regulations. This part is fairly big so I’ll separate it into two parts. Tomorrow federal trailer regulations for caravans but today the caravan itself .
Although the state determines trailer registration, it is federal laws which govern everything else I.e safety, lights, door placement, grey water systems etc
But firstly a definition. You may have noticed I use caravan instead of tiny house. According to federal laws, a caravan is “an enclosed trailer, which is intended for use as a mobile home or living quarters when parked. So legally, a tiny house is a caravan.
To me this was great news. It meant that tiny houses, as long as they comply with technical requirements, are legal.
So what are the requirements for a caravan. There are a few regulations.
Bathroom (excuse the subject matter)
Every vehicle which is equipped with any lavatory basin, closet, urinal or sink must comply with the following standards.
Except in the case of a caravan, the contents must be emptied into a tank carried by the vehicle. Such tank must be effectively ventilated by means of a outside pipe.
Regardless of whether a tank is used, the emptied contents must contain
” non-inflammable and non irritant chemicals of such character and in such quantity as to form at all times an efficient deodorant and germicide in respect of the contents of the tank, closet or urinal as the case may be ” (Australian design rules 42/00)
Finally no basin or sink can drain into any tank which closet or urinal empties. I.e separate tanks and/or plumbing for for sinks and toilets.
Doors: must be either outward swinging or sliding doors. One has to be on the left hand side or at the rear.
Fire extinguishers: the caravan must have a fire extinguisher in accordance with Australian standards.
Windows: At least half of the windows must be capable of being opened or the caravan must have an alternative method of ventilation.
I believe that’s all for federal regulations regarding caravans. Next time the caravan trailer itself. But as always please obtain your own legal advice if you are considering building your own tiny house.