Sleeping In RV While Driving: Is It Safe?

sleeping in rv while driving - Woman in bed

Traveling and living in an RV involves sleeping above all activities. Usually, this is done by parking or camping at a location and stopping for sleep, but it is also possible to sleep in an RV while someone else is driving. The main concern here is the safety and the legalities that come with it.

Is it safe to sleep in an RV while driving? The direct answer is No. It is generally unsafe to sleep in an RV while someone is driving especially if you occupy areas not equipped with safety belts. It is also against the law in many states.

It is a fact that sleeping is inevitable in our day-to-day living. It is a crucial part of getting rest. However, if you are always on the go in your RV, it comes quite a challenge if you live with someone and sleep while you drive or vice versa. In this article, I will discuss one of the most common reasons if it is good for your passengers to sleep while you drive. Also, I will enumerate if it is legal or illegal in some states across the US.

Safety Concerns of Sleeping While Driving

Sleeping while the RV is in motion is a big safety concern. Luckily, if you have tried it and came out successful without being caught, good for you! But now is the right time to stop it. Yes, your motorhomes, fifth wheels, and RVs are indeed a good buddy on the road. It holds all your needs like in a typical home while giving you the freedom to hop from one place to another. Despite the comfort of these mobile homes and being your haven while you travel, their general design is not safe for someone inside while it’s on the road.

I am not saying that each of your RVs is unsafe for passengers since some are customized with safety belts for passengers. Some are also designed to carry passengers while moving as long as you occupy the seats designated for travel prepped with buckles.

Suppose your family lives full time in RV and your child sleep while you drive. This will be one problem since it does not have the safety features necessary to sleep in a bed. Not just bed but will also include sofa, chairs and other dining or lounging areas.

A person sleeping in the RV can affect the movement while towing, especially in weight and flexibility. In addition, having someone sleep in the RV or other fifth wheel can affect towing and maneuverability. It will give you additional weight as you drive and haul. This is subjective, though, on the type of wheels you are hauling or driving.

The safety in the main vehicle is attributed to the presence of seat built and the built of your RV. The RV’s body can be made up of different materials, and if you might fall, it will not be a good experience. Just in case you suddenly stop, your passenger may fall, which can cause injuries.

Legal Road Concerns in Dozing Off in an RV

Some laws are specific to sleeping in an RV and other campervans, and you should know some of them. Also, sleeping is just one of the things you cannot do in an RV or other motorhome.

Sleeping in an RV: Yay or Nay in the Law

Aside from the safety concerns, there are also certain legalities that you should remember when sleeping in an RV. It is common knowledge that you have to wear a seat belt when you drive, and as long as you can sleep while you sit with your buckle on, you will be fine. It would be best if you also kept in mind that the passengers of the RV should only be limited to the number of seatbelts available.

Most states in the US will allow you to ride any vehicle as long as you have a seat belt on and, of course, if the driver has a license. However, being inside the RV or camper, like sleeping inside areas without seat belts while moving, is not allowed, like your bed or couch. Since not all RVs are designed with safety belts, it is not good to sleep while driving. It is unsafe and also mostly illegal in many states.

These seat belt laws always require you to wear them for your safety. Depending on the state, it can be their primary or secondary law. This law has varying requirements and conditions that apply to different passenger’s age. Of all the states, New Hampshire is the lone state which allows you to drive without wearing your seatbelt. Some states with strict seatbelt laws are Alabama, Arizona, California, Florida, and Illinois, among others. If caught, you will acquire fines depending on the provisions of their law. To be safe, do not sleep while the RV is moving. Just take a quick break and park.

Other Activities in The RV You Cannot Do

You have learned in this article that sleeping is certainly one of the things you cannot do while on your moving RV. It also includes walking around, cooking, showering, and the likes. Always remember that if it involves you moving around without safety belts and does not allow you to stay in place, then it is probably included in the “Donts Checklist.” Remember always to be careful since it can result in serious injuries for you and your family. It is never worth the risk when it involves yourself and your loved ones. Always put safety first.


I think it is quite clear now that sleeping in a moving RV should be avoided because of safety and law concerns. These concerns are not only limited to sleeping but other things your passenger cannot do while moving. If next time, your sleep fairy visits you even in broad daylight, park, and sleep. This way, you will not get into any trouble and will stay safe on the road!

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