NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – Summer means it’s time to hitch up the camper and hit the road. But improper towing can be dangerous to you and other drivers. So, here are some tips for top-notch towing.

First off, weight distribution is key. “You want to see a flat plane between your vehicle and your trailer or camper,” Major Brett Williams, District 5 commander of the Colorado State Patrol, said in a press release. “If you see what your towing is tipping forward toward the hitch or back away from the hitch, this indicates less traction and more swaying.”

Generally, front-loading is better than having too much weight behind the trailer axles, Colorado State Patrol says. And heavy items should be packed as low on the trailer as possible.

Of course, another important factor is ensuring the trailer is connected correctly. That includes making sure you don’t have chains or wires that might drag on the ground. Sparks from dragging equipment can start a wildfire. Many people recommend crossing your safety chains, and it may be a legal requirement in some states.

In addition to proper equipment, how you drive can have a big impact on safety. Larger trailers are more sensitive to wind and generally, the faster you go, the more your trailer might sway, the Colorado State Patrol notes. So, it’s important to drive with more caution than usual.