I was recently at a roadblock where I saw a JMPD Officer examining a young man’s drivers license, shortly thereafter he swopped places with an elder gent who I assumed to be his father and they drove away.
I was next in line and as the officer was checking my license I asked him what had transpired, he explained that the younger driver’s license did not allow him to tow a large trailer in excess of 750kg and he had allowed the father to take over the wheel without issuing a fine.
As this interested me I approached a JMPD officer with whom I had worked on various matters over the years in an attempt to clarify the matter. His explanation was simple, all licenses issued as code 8 prior to the introduction of the credit card system allowed for the towing of trailers and caravans as they were reissued carrying a code EB, subsequently around 2000 all new licenses were issued with a code B. Your EB license allows one to tow a caravan or trailer with a combined gross vehicle mass of up to 3500kg. The B option does not allow you to tow anything with a GVM exceeding 750kg.
So if caught towing a trailer or a caravan that exceeds a GVM of 750kg, you can be issued with a fine and asked to unhitch the trailer or change drivers as was the case at the roadblock, the other option and it’s not ideal is to re-sit your license and advise the testing station that it is with the purpose of being issued with an EB license.
The big question here is what about your insurance? Well this is an important one. When you take out an insurance policy we validate the status of your driving license in terms of its validity (expiry) and code we will also request these details for any other nominated driver. Should you be involved in an accident with either a trailer or caravan and the driver held the incorrect category of license the claim could be rejected. So it’s important to ensure that other younger family members have the correct license before setting out on a trip.