No details yet on what failed, but here's another deadly trailer accident

By NORTH KITSAP HERALD
Nov 20 2010, 8:34 PM UPDATED
SUQUAMISH A driver was killed on Suquamish Way Saturday evening after
the driver's SUV was struck by a boat and trailer that separated from a truck in the oncoming lane.
The driver's identity is being withheld until next of kin are notified, Kitsap County Sheriff's Deputy Scott Wilson said.
The collision happened shortly after 6 p.m. near the intersection of Totten Road and Suquamish Way. Wilson said a Ford truck towing a fishing boat was traveling south on Suquamish Way when the trailer separated from the truck. The boat and trailer swerved into the northbound lane and struck a Jeep SUV, killing its driver.
No other injuries were reported, Wilson said.
The Sheriff's office is investigating the cause of the crash. Suquamish Way was closed temporarily. ______________________
Things like this is why I'm so nervous about modifying hitches and receivers. I'm watching to see if they release details of exactly what failed and under what conditions the failure(s) occurred in.
Hopefully they won't involve welds made by the owner or a friend.
--
Tin Lizzie
"Elephant: A mouse built to government specifications."-Lazarus Long
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Maybe something as simple as the driver who forgot to tighten the nut on the tow hitch.
When I bought my boat, I was towing a trailer, and it actually cracked and almost fell apart due to age.
i
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TinLizziedl wrote:

Far greater probability of failure due to carelessness - hitch pin lock, tightening hitch ball, trailer hitch lock, safety chains, breakaway brakes, or rust than any welding modification issue.
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Reminds me of the lawnmower that hit me at 120 Miles/Hr.
I was going 60, he was going 60 in oppose lanes of loop 12 in Dallas area. The mower fell off the trailer as the truck pulling it came close and it slammed into my front corner of the car, and sliced my tire with the shattered engine.
Put me in a 'bar' ditch - the ditch that runs along the road to catch rain and drunk cars... :-) and as luck would have it, a Deputy Sheriff was on his way to work and was stopped at a corner... stopped the truck guys and had them return for the trash and insurance.
It was really fun talking to my insurance guy - saying a mower hit me going 60!
Martin
On 11/21/2010 8:14 PM, TinLizziedl wrote:

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Sometimes, you can do everything right, and something just breaks. Sometimes, it is just stupidity or getting in a hurry.
A friend of mine and I were heading to go gold mining in Arizona. He had a sluice mounted on a trailer. On the divided road going over, the trailer came off and when we were slowing down, it passed us on the roadway. It went into the gently sloping ditch, luckily kept going in a straight line, drug on the tongue, and came to rest just as it got to one of those ditches cut across the median to drain water. Had it hit that going fast, it would have totaled the trailer.
He had failed to tighten the ball on the hitch, and the nut came off.
Doh!
Keep us posted on what the cause is determined to be.
You're a welder. Do it right. Use good chain, or even oversized. Make thick pad eyes if you don't want to heat any links, and bolt it on with a grade 8. Weld the crap out of it. Overkill seriously. After that, shit happens. All you can do is all you can do, and that's all you can do.
I like to stop every hour or so and check load, hub temp with a laser thermometer, tie downs, hitch, etc.
Steve
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He also failed to use safety chain, right?

Amen.
If I haul anything, I always stop a mile or two into a trip to see if any tie downs need to be retightened.
i
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Ignoramus21476 wrote:

Every single fuel stop while the $75 in diesel is pumping I inspect every tire (10 with my trailer), hub and tire temps with IR thermometer, all hitch connection, electrical connections, tie downs, etc. If I stop at the truck stop for a rest, I do that full inspection before heading out again.
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off.

He had chains, but they were the s types with no latch, and when the trailer went up under the truck a couple of times, they came off. Not a very good setup from the start.
Steve
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Which reminds me, I should get that kind, also. Thanks
i
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As a second thought, those S hooks are not that easy to separate. Are you sure that he did not forget to hook them up?
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Ignoramus21476 wrote:

I doubt that both S hooks would bounce out of the receiver slots, but since they are open connections, I think it's quite possible that the forces were high enough to deform the S and slide them free. My trailer has screw links on the safety chains and breakaway cable, so being a fully closed connection they would have to deform a lot before they would fail. All the rental trailers I've used had either forged hooks with spring latches or screw links on their safeties.
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Here's a link to the Kitsap County Sheriff's Office report on the incident. Still no real details on exactly what failed on the receiver/hitch.
http://www.kitsapgov.com/sheriff/mediareleases/2010/11-21%20 % 20Suquamish%20fatality%20collision%20update.pdf
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Tin Lizzie
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Scary. Let us know if they find out how the trailer separated.
i
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