Recovery points and ratings
For any 4WDer their recovery gear is a staple part of their overall kit on board. And with so much available to the consumer, it is hard to imagine anyone knowingly hitting an off-road environment without at least the basics. However, it is worth going through the basics, especially for those new to the game. Potentially overlooked too frequently by those outside 4WD clubs, for instance, are the recovery points permanently fitted to the vehicle. You can have all the snatch straps in the world, but unless you have something strong to attach them to on the vehicle, you are wasting space and money.
These days, manufacturers like Roadsafe produce vehicle-specific recovery points, specifically designed for each model, usually offered in matched pairs, which fit to the front of the 4WD’s chassis rails. In almost all cases the points are rated to 5000kg WLL (working load limit) per point. The advantage to having pairs of points is that you can use equaliser straps between them to reduce the overall chassis strain and potential twist produced during aggressive snatch recoveries. Being mounted to the front of the chassis also improves accessibility, and means the strain of the recovery is applied directly to the chassis, rather than cross members or bar work.
Ratings are a pretty big deal when it comes to your gear. Every manufacturer needs to be able to offer proof that their product can do what it claims. This more often than not will be a tag with the kilogram working load limit, length and batch code sewn onto the strap at the eye or stamped to a plate. Accountability is something everyone has to deal with nowadays, so best to embrace it. I personally prefer to use rated closed-loop style recovery components over hooks, purely because of the strength and strap security (won’t slip off the hook) and I don’t like to rush into recoveries, taking time to evaluate a safe recovery whenever I can. There are going to be times when a snatch strap, winch, tow strap, recovery board, shovel or jack could be the best and safest method to get the vehicle back in motion. Knowing which will only come from experience. Having no options can reduce your progress significantly. Finally, a thought before I go. Everyone gets stuck at some stage, so relax, take in the surroundings. There’s a good chance you’re not at work!
Time to work out some recovery options.