At first your going to think the subject of this post is the red truck with the red boat, but no…. It’s actually the submerged white blob that appears to be a small whale. It turns out to be a brand new Chevrolet work truck complete with the boat trailer attached. As an aside to what must have been a horrible day, this all occurred at Lake Pleasant, which for one unlucky guy was anything but pleasant.
The slope of the grade is significant, and that probably what caused the truck to roll. Many people are used to allowing the transmission to hold the vehicle in place, but on such a steep hill that is not enough staying power. You have to apply the Emergency Brake. Gravity is a powerful force. In this case, gravity won out over common sense. Another contributing factor might have been the area where the lake is situated. If the road in is long and steep, the trucks brakes might have been weakened by heat stress and not able to fully hold the vehicle.
On some lakes, you note only get a wet truck you get a ticket and maybe fined for environmental damage. Gas floats, and it wants to escape from the tank. That may only be the beginning of your problems. If the vehicle is a few years old, it may be totaled like the Tahoe above. That can leave the owner still paying for a vehicle that is under-insured.
The damage also adds up quicker in saltwater versus freshwater. If the car is not totaled, you could still end up with long-term problems that may or may not be covered by your insurance. Corrosion is a big deal in flooded vehicles. Mold, rust, and other problems also occur. A bigger problem is what to do with your vehicle after it has been submerged. You cannot sell it without disclosing the damage, though people do. You know what happens when you drop your cell phone in the water. Vehicles are full of electronic components that become ruined as soon as they come into contact with water. You can clearly see how much water gets into the truck when they open the doors. That is a lot of gallons of water that pour out of that truck. The long term problems are not going to be fun with which to deal. It is almost best if the vehicle gets totaled.
How To Prevent These Kinds of Accidents
- Always use your parking brake on a hill.
- If using a boat-ramp use a chock to hold the front tires.
- Before exiting the vehicle to deal with the boat, double check that the vehicle is in park or first gear, that the emergency brake is engaged and then wait a minute before exiting the vehicle.
Vehicle Failure or Driver Error?
While this is a bad day for this driver it, could have been worse. Other people could have been in the vehicle, and that could have turned deadly. In that light, these people were fortunate. Another good tip is to avoid alcohol and boating. Most of us, if not all of us have done something stupid with a vehicle. What do you think? Was this truck accident caused by stupidity or mechanical failure… or both?