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Unfortunate mishap

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 14:04
RifleDude View Drop Down
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Friends:

I had a weird and rather scary incident happen yesterday afternoon. I was out at my hunting property doing some mowing with a tractor. It had just stopped raining, and my brother's tractor got stuck in mud on a dirt county road near the property boundary. So, since we seemed to be making some progress getting the tractor un-stuck by itself, I figured a little nudge would be sufficient to get it out of the mud hole, and I tried pulling him out with my truck. I was using one of the heavy duty ratchet straps he uses to strap his tractor to the trailer as a tow rope, and since one strap wasn't long enough to put my truck on solid ground, we used 2 straps, connected by the ratchet mechanism. 

The strap was under such great tension while pulling, it broke and the ratchet came flying through both my rear and front glass on my truck cab as if it was shot out of a cannon! The sliding center section of my rear window literally exploded, sending glass shrapnel in all directions throughout the cab, cutting the back and side of my head in a few places, and a large chunk of the window hit the back of my head with sufficient force to give me a mild concussion. The ratchet in question is one of those large, heavy duty ones that weighs 2-3 lbs. It sounded like someone fired a rifle inside the cab when it came flying through the glass at a high rate of speed! The strap was rated for extreme heavy static loads, and it didn't come loose, it broke, unleashing a tremendous amount of energy, as you can see from the pics below. 

I was very fortunate the flying ratchet missed my head! If my head had been 1ft further to the right, in the path of the ratchet, it would've killed me instantly. Note how the ratchet drove the base of my rearview mirror through the windshield even after breaking the rear window.

I managed to drive 4 hours back home, and I honestly only remember portions of the trip, due to the concussion. This could've easily ended much worse.






Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 14:27
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Oh my Ted, thankful you aren't hurt badly. Did you get an x-ray?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 16:23
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Now that's a bolt out the blue. I'm glad you're okay...will wire funds for new underwear as I just about crapped my pants reading this. Can't imagine how unnerving that must have been at the moment it happened.

FWIW, I still have the heavy duty towing strap with anchor bolts from my highway construction days. The strap probably should be replaced. New, it had a working strength of 5 tons and the anchor shackles 7 tons. Buying now, I'd probably get something like http://cmworks.com/Rigging/Shackles/CMAlloyWebSlingShackle/ (wouldn't trust steel from elsewhere in the world...least not from people who allow melamine in their infant formula).
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 16:31
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Holy chit Ted. So glad you are ok! I'll bet that boom got your attention. Time for the concussion protocol... rest and relaxation.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 16:50
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Wow doesnt begin to cover how lucky you were. Glad to hear you are OK. Please rest thats number one right now.

Just think how long Earnhardt Jr. has been and will be out.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 20:46
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Holy crap. As soon as I read you 'connected two together' I knew what was coming....I ran ahead and saw the pictures!!  Jesus!  Lucky you! That could have killed you.  You'll have to write this down as a "close one".  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 20:58
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Glad you are okay!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 23:08
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Ted, I am so glad you were not hurt more seriously.  Your angels were guarding you, for sure.   Prayers are with you. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/19/2016 at 23:21
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This makes the second near miss in this truck. First was the mirror side swipe. Getting bolder can lead to not getting older. Glad your in recovery mode. Be careful. My Prayers are with you.

 Note to self get rid of my old shredded straps.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 01:03
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Holy crap...lucky escape. Man, these things happen in a split second. I also had a small mishap at work and you think afterwards...what the hell was I thinking.
Keep safe brother...
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 03:33
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Whoa! That will put a stain on the the seat! Glad you're okay brother! Your guardian angel just lost more gray hairs! We're old enough now we know their hair is gray now we're making them pull it out!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 04:07
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Glad you're ok Ted.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 06:08
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Dang brother, glad your OK. lady luck was with you.

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 09:54
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Chit like this makes you think about your own mortality, and what the consequences could be the next time you rely on Redneck Engineering Inc. to complete your task.
Ted, I'm so relieved that you were not seriously hurt or killed. Who else would make logical and educated arguments with the other educated (and sometimes not so educated) folks her if you weren't around.

I am a little surprised that a tie down strap would have that kind of energy when it broke. I've seen steel cable break before, and that's scary enough. With that big ratchet on that strap, it was like a big sling shot.

Buy a BIG tow strap and/or some chains. They don't store the energy under tension.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 10:31
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Reminds me of the many times God has kept me from "the worst". I thank Him everyday for keeping me and all my family safe. As I just thanked Him for protecting you Ted. If your not doing so already, it is a good habit to establish. He is faithful!!! Don't you just hate having to explain this kinda thing to the wife and the insurance adjuster???
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 12:17
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See this happen before but not a severe.  I've always used a heavy blanket or heavy jacket over my straps when pulling or winching.  This will absorb the energy in the event of a break, or at least some of it.


Glad you're ok!

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 12:58
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Originally posted by SVT_Tactical SVT_Tactical wrote:

I've always used a heavy blanket or heavy jacket over my straps when pulling or winching.  This will absorb the energy in the event of a break, or at least some of it.


Yes sir! I was just about to mention that in my "after action report." That's always a good practice to use when pulling something. This was one of those situations where we were using what we had available to us (i.e. "redneck engineering"), and far too often, that results in near misses like this.

I learned several lessons from this that will stick with me. Unfortunately, it seems that too often I have to experience frightening incidents like this for common sense lessons to fully sink in. I wanted to share so that hopefully others will learn from my mistakes.

Thank you all for your concern. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: September/20/2016 at 15:23
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All the best. Glad you're still among us, Brother. 
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