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It's a Team's Life

The wreck didn’t kill me but …

By Linda Caffee
Posted Dec 31st 2020 10:17AM

I have written before about unsecured items in the sleeper and how dangerous they can be.  We have never been in a head-on collision nor have we hit a stationary object and I do not think I can even imagine how abrupt the stop must be. Recently on a Facebook page, I saw several pictures of a wrecked truck, but what really hit home was what the driver wrote.  I asked Danny if I could share his story and one of his pictures on a blog and he said yes and maybe it will save someone’s life.  

Here is what he wrote about this horrific accident that only one person walked away from. 

Screenname: Danny Devildog 

I wanted to share something, hopefully it reaches as many drivers as possible. I don't want to give specifics, but facts. The Monday before Thanksgiving, a car crossed the median on a 2 lane road and hit me head on. It happened so fast I didn't even have time to brace myself- which is probably why I didn't get hurt. Anyways, at 50 mph, I came to a very abrupt change of momentum and direction. My truck jackknifed right, into a K- rail steel barrier, and finally stopped in a ditch. Everything- and I mean every single thing- not properly secured, ended up either on my dash or on the floor. Coffee maker, printer, bars of soap i had in a 5 gal bucket on the top bunk- were on my dash.

When I came to a stop after what seemed like an eternity, I immediately grabbed my phone and wallet, just in case the truck was going to burn up. Luckily, my door opened, but there was a giant tangled mess of jagged K-rail all around my truck. I carefully climbed down it, and my feet then sank into some very soft dirt. There was battery acid, hot oil and coolant on the ground too. I finally climbed up the hill and made my way to the car that hit me, but unfortunately there was nothing I could do for the driver.

Lessons learned-

*ALWAYS pay attention. In my instance, there was nothing I could've done, but every example is different.

* Quit wearing friggin flip flops, sandals, slides e.t.c. In a wreck like mine, you will probably lose your sandals. Then have to cut your feet navigating sharp metal and broken glass. There's a reason for closed toe shoes.

* Assume your truck can burn down, so keep valuables close by so if you have to jump from a burning wreck, you can call 911 and have money to buy your next meal. You may even go as far as having a "go bag" with your laptop, a days worth of clothes, e.t.c, buckled into the passenger seat.

* Keep your truck clean and properly maintained. If you don't have proper battery hold downs and clean, good cables, or your hood is bungee'd shut, or you have a ton of trash in your truck, you're only making it harder for yourself to survive. My 30 lb microwave was stopped by the cabinet behind me,  but had it got launched, I could've easily got killed.

* And in this day of cell phones, we no longer remember phone numbers like we used to, so take the time to remember at least 2 numbers you would definitely call if you had nobody else to help.

Just my 2 cents on what helped me walk away completely unharmed. And I also thank God for protecting me!

Hopefully what Danny has written will have you look around inside your truck and sleeper to see what is not secured.  This object could even be a pet lying on the bed as they also will go through the windshield.  Start 2021 with safety in mind! 

Bob & Linda Caffee

TeamCaffee

Saint Louis MO

Expediters since January 2005

[email protected]

 

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