Batavia,OH.,U.S.50 A semi trailer came uncoupled from tractor killing 2 in a pickup.

Discussion in 'Trucking Accidents' started by Apostolic, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. Apostolic

    Apostolic Super Moderator Staff Member

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  2. nightlinedr55

    nightlinedr55 Member

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    I believe with todays technology, there should be some failsafe for this not to ever, ever happen. It has happened to me 2 times in the first 2 years out of the 9yrs. I been driving, luckily, one was at the door pulling out, and the other one, I was looking back and caught it. I think there will be something in the next 5yrs..Someone will Invent something to prevent this, any Ideas? My Idea would be to have a speed bump in the yard to see if it comes loose, before you leave the yard.
     
  3. delraydoug

    delraydoug New Member

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    allways give it a good tug when coupling
     
  4. Cerberus_Kelpie

    Cerberus_Kelpie Wings Over the World!

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    It sucks greatly when people are killed due to driver error and/or faulty maintenance.
    Any time equipment is questionable, DO NOT USE IT UNTIL VERIFIED USEFUL!!
    THE LIFE YOU SAVE MIGHT BE YOURS!

    I've NEVER HAD a trailer fall off a fifth wheel nor ever had a steer tire blow out when in transit and I'm not alone.
    Whatever blocked the fifth wheel from its function was driver error or faulty maintenance which goes back to driver error since the driver was the last one to check operation of and use the equipment.

    EVERYTHING MECHANICAL WEARS OUT.
    Being as how I have some experience being a WRENCH on Tractors and Trailers, I have some semblance of knowledge and experience in operations and maintenance of fifth wheels.

    >>One can eliminate whatever is blocking the locking by LOOKING entirely at the Fifth Wheel as well the mounting of it, after which one can CLEAN OUT DEBRIS or whatever is decreasing/eliminating the actuation of the fifth wheel mechanism.
    THERE IS NO LOAD SO HOT IT HAS TO COOL OFF IN A DITCH, CANYON, INVERTED, ETC.

    Sometimes the operation is HINDERED DUE TO LACK OF MAINTENANCE -- LUBRICATION, ADJUSTMENT.
    There need NEVER BE ANY REASON other than FAULTY/NON EXISTENT MAINTENANCE and/or DRIVER ERROR for ANY Fifth Wheel to uncouple during transit.
    Nothing need be invented to help the unfortunate few times such occurrence occurs.
    Most shops have a ALREADY INVENTED and WELL USED TOOL specific to testing the locking mechanism of fifth wheels.

    May your travels not become travails.

    CHEERS!!
    :1036316054::wavey:
     
  5. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Active Member

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    Good advice for all consenting adults
     
  6. RickyRicardo

    RickyRicardo Active Member

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    Everything you say is true CK, but that rig would not have travelled 19.5 miles with an uncoupled king pin, especially on a dry, hilly, curvy road such as that one. I've travelled that Godawful stretch of US50 and there are enough pulls to have separated the units long before it happened. He likely wouldn't have made it out of the gate.
     
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  7. Old Tex

    Old Tex Member

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    Back in 1961 I hooked up in Lebanon N.H. and headed west on old U.S. 4 pulling a 40 ft. possum belly cattle trailer. Half way through Rutland Vt. ( about 40 miles into my trip ) the trailer came loose from the 5th wheel and dropped into the street. I was only going about 20 mph. The H Model Mack I was driving was a 1958 model and had a Holland 5th wheel. The locking mechanism just fell apart. Bob Tailed back to Lebanon... got a new 5th wheel installed , back to Rutland , hooked up and continued on my way to Norfolk Nebraska. This was the ONLY time I ever had 5th wheel " problems " in my 45 years of trucking... I notice that some trucking companies advertise " in cab fifth wheel release " as part of their pitch to attract drivers. Perhaps this played a part in this wreck.. A man with 40 years experience doesn't make rookie mistakes
     
  8. Apostolic

    Apostolic Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I also had one major 5th wheel issue in my 45 year city driving career.
    I remember it well even though it was back around the mid to late 1970's.
    I bob tailed out to Xerox in Webster NY,about 15 miles out from my Hall's Motor Transit Rochester terminal.
    It was in the winter,I was picking up a loaded 40 foot rag top packed to the tail with printers.
    It was out in one of their trailer parking lots.

    I backed under it,& it took off,I continued in reverse chasing the darn thing till I thought it hooked up.
    I did crouch under to check the pin to see if it was locked,however the channel was packed with snow so I couldn't see the pin.

    I then cranked up the landing legs,did my walk around to check the lights,then leaving the trailer brakes on the trailer,did a quick pull up with the tractor.
    It felt like it was hooked & good to go,so I took off bringing it back to my yard,where a line haul guy could take it on down the road.

    When I arrived at our yard, a dock hand told me he'd drop it for me,while I handed in my paper work.

    Well I was ready to clock out,when the dock guy comes into the dispatch office & asks me if I knew the trailer wasn't hooked up.

    I was shocked that I'd made it all the way back without parting company with that old trailer,& knew I'd never forget that happened.
    As well as being over cautious about hooking every trailer up there after.
     
  9. 4ramsey

    4ramsey Active Member

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    Every morning i climb under and do a visual. the grease the shop uses on the 5th wheels clogs and freezes in the jaws. Several times i think i'm locked and i'm not. Once i see the the jaw wrapped
    around the kingpin and the handle all the way in i tug and leave the yard. we have drvers losing trailers during the winter in the yard
     
  10. xchief

    xchief Active Member

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    looks like his handle is out, not latched.
     
  11. Matthew3252

    Matthew3252 New Member

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    This happened to me just a few days ago hauling a load out of Pine island, Mn. After about an hour or so on the road, while traveling down I-90 at 65mph, the trailer uncoupled. Thankfully, no one was injured and the trailer had minor damage.
    Upon inspection of the Fontaine 3000 series top plate, I found the "wear ring" was broken. Of course, Fontaine says this could not be the reason for the uncoupling.
    That's what I would say if I were them too.
     
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  12. Cerberus_Kelpie

    Cerberus_Kelpie Wings Over the World!

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    That's new, I've yet to see such ad(s) yet I no look at many sites for driving gigs.
    It's probably a companion for autoshift.

    The in cab 5th wheel release ONLY WORKS when Tractor Parking Brakes are engaged, at least on the 2007 Freightshaker I used to drive.
    Just like pulling the handle, not every time does the "in cab release" release because of random pressure on King Pin.

    Since I'm no longer with the company that has that 2007 Freightshaker, I'm to seriously be checking conditions of Equipment before I navigate roads. There will always be "questionable" companies regarding their maintenance plans/procedures however WE ALL HAVE THE ABILITY to "Just Say NO" regarding questionable equipment operation.

    Thanks B-2-U-4 Yur Tym! CHEERS!!
     

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