This is an old post from when I first finished my bus. I can’t believe how long it’s been. My e-book for converting a vehicle into a motor home is almost done and I can’t wait to publish it. In the meantime, here’s my post about keeping safe in a converted vehicle just before my Burning Man trip in 2018.
My bus is basically finished and I’m hitting the road in 3 days to go to Burning Man. Sometimes I do things a little haphazardly, but my safety is very important. I’m still in the process of finding a safe place to park where I won’t get towed or broken into. This might be the hardest step of all. But there are other safety precautions worth thinking about. I found a great website that lists a lot of safety precautions for those dwelling in a camper van or motor home.
I’ve gone through the list and checked off many of the important features as well as added a few of my own.
Get proper insurance
Getting the vehicle insured was a challenge. Many major insurance companies won’t cover converted vehicles. My personal insurance said they could provide it if I had the vehicle appraised and re-titled. For convenience sake, I ended up going with my Good Sam membership and signing up for National General Insurance. The rates seem reasonable, and I’m relieved to have the vehicle covered properly, but make sure you read all the details. I don’t believe my personal belongings are covered.
Sign up for road-side assistance
Towing can get expensive. And I’ve already had to tow this stupid bus twice. I really don’t want to deal with a crisis while on the road. It was difficult finding road-side assistance. Triple A does not cover converted vehicles. Again, I went with the Good Sam Platinum Plan because they cover skoolies.
Boy did I learn this one the hard way! One of my first trips into town was a disaster. My entire counter top fell over when I made a sudden turn. Thank goodness it didn’t damage anything but a few drawers. These were easily repaired. I’ve also had a few casualties come off the shelves and almost got hit in the head by my medicine cabinet when the door flung open. Make sure you’ve properly secured everything before you start driving.
Have a working smoke and CO2 detector
I bought a 2 in 1 smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector. I plan on using propane to conserve my electrical needs, and if you want to do the same, having a working CO2 detector is a must! I’ll sleep better knowing it’s there for sure.
Have a working fire extinguisher
I have a fire extinguisher, but I need to test it out still. If you have one, make sure it’s in working order and up to date. It’s easy to overlook these things when you don’t anticipate using them.
Make sure all doors lock
My bus has a lot of doors and the two back doors have no locking mechanism, so I bought a bicycle lock for one and some zip ties for the other to keep them locked. Eventually, I can invest in something a little permanent.
Install an alarm system
I had an alarm system installed by Car Fi mostly for my own peace of mind. I’m more worried about my bus getting broken into than I am about my personal safety. There are several shock sensors on either side of the bus that set off an alarm anytime it’s messed with or someone attempts to open the doors. I think I’ll sleep better at night knowing an alarm will go off in anyone attempts to break in.
Have professionals do the large jobs
I did a lot of my own work inside the bus such as the painting, floors, and furnishings. But as for the electrical and the plumbing, I relied on professionals. I read a lot about it and even watched some YouTube tutorials, but I’m glad I paid the extra money to have a professional do the work.
Park in a safe place
This is one step I’m still working out. I want to find a safe place to park that’s not violating any laws or going to attract a lot of attention. I’m worried about my bus getting broken into. I found a few useful websites that give advice about finding a place to park
Trust your intuition
I’m a big believer in trust your gut instinct. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t ignore that feeling. If you feel unsafe in a location, change locations. My bus adventure is just beginning, and I’m looking forward to the experience.
Happy trails and stay safe.