Maple Valley, WA

23933 SE 264th Street
Maple Valley, WA 98038

Auburn, WA

420 H St NW
Auburn, WA 98001

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Maple Valley, WA

23933 SE 264th St
Maple Valley, WA 98038

Auburn, WA

420 H St NW
Auburn, WA 98001
Semi-truck Accident Recovery on Snoqualmie Pass

Semi-truck Accident Recovery on Snoqualmie Pass

On August 18, 2019, a semi-truck accident was blocking Exit 53 on Westbound I-90. The truck was severely damaged, and the busy Snoqualmie Pass needed to be opened as quickly as possible. Pro-Tow 24 Hour Towing was called to assist with semi-truck accident recovery.

We worked directly with the Washington State Department of Transportation and Washington State Patrol. Team Pro-Tow was able to bring the semi-truck back to the roadway for safe transport.

We used a specialized wrecker from Miller Industries to pull the truck back on the road and for the transport of the vehicle, and its parts. Then all residual debris and potential contamination were removed from the site, completing an efficient and safe semi-truck accident recovery plan.

What is a Wrecker?

In this recovery blog, you’ve seen us refer to the term “wrecker” frequently. A wrecker is a style of tow truck and is one of the most common driveable hauling machines used to assist with vehicle and semi-truck accident tow jobs. Wreckers are generally driven and operated by skilled drivers that have specific certifications.

Wreckers are commonly used to assist with accidents where the vehicle is totaled from the accident and is too damaged to be transported any other way. The wrecker is designed to make loading and towing easier, compared to other tow vehicles. It has a hydraulic lift system and a flatbed. It can be used to tow a vehicle or haul the entire thing on the flatbed.

Pro-Tow Dislodges a Box Truck From a Power Pole on Highway 169

Pro-Tow Dislodges a Box Truck From a Power Pole on Highway 169

On August 6, 2019, Pro-Tow responded to a dispatched call regarding a semi-truck accident on busy Highway 169 near Maple Valley, WA. A commercial box truck had gone off the road and lodged into a power pole. We arrived on the scene along with the Washington State Patrol, Maple Valley Fire and Life Safety, and the Washington State Department of Transportation.

After checking in with the other agencies and Incident Command, we got straight to the task of accessing the scene and creating an initial recovery plan. To get this job done, we needed a heavy-duty incident response vehicle with special equipment as well as a medium-duty wrecker.

First, we had to cut off the badly damaged cargo box before any extraction could take place. Then, we had to get clearance from local utilities to ensure continuing with the recovery of this semi-truck accident was safe and not interfering with any of their lines. Finally, we installed a three-point rigging system to lift the vehicle from the power pole and ditch with the crane style wrecker.

Once the truck was out, we hooked it up using extensive safety precautions to transport it to a secure storage yard. Overall, we were able to minimize lane closures and minimize traffic congestion. The debris was all cleared from the accident, and we helped the owner’s agent with cargo and personal items before returning the equipment and closing the call.

When there is a semi-truck accident like this one, safety is our top priority. That includes the safety of the agent, the other agencies and responders on-site, our heavy equipment operators and drivers, and everyone driving near the incident on the highway that day. When you call Pro-Tow for accident recovery, you can be sure that the proper steps are taken to create and execute a safe and effective recovery plan.

Jack and Spill on The I-90

Jack and Spill on The I-90

In this incident which occurred on July 15, 2019, a tractor-trailer jackknifed on the Interstate Highway 90 in Snoqualmie, WA. The semi-truck accident caused the fuel tank to break open, spilling an entire tank of diesel fuel onto the roadway. Both Pro-Tow and Pro-Enviro were called to the scene to help with the semi-truck spill recovery and to get the busy highway open again for traffic.

We worked with the Department of Ecology, WashingtonState Department of Transportation, and WSP to safely execute semi-truck spill recovery. Because the spill was large, it required fast action by everyone at the scene. It is crucial to contain any contaminants, so they don’t go into nearby storm drains. In this case, there was a drain nearby, and so we needed to block it temporarily, clean it, and evacuate the hazard to prevent downstream diesel fuel spill contamination.

Why Do We Need To Protect Storm Drains?

Oil and fuel spills can present a significant threat to the environment. Unfortunately, stormwater pollution from regular urban runoff, close to vehicle and heavy machinery use, already creates a negative environmental impact. Whatever gets into those storm drains, will make its way eventually into natural waterways.

If one of your commercial vehicles has a spill and it contaminates the water,semi-truck spill recovery and containment are required immediately. Failure to do so can result in waterway contamination and hefty fines from government bodies. When a spill does occur, you are responsible for cleaning it up. If it is contained before it gets to the storm drain, the recovery is less involved and thus less expensive. So, the sooner you call Pro-Enviro to the scene, the more effective and affordable the cleanup cost. Plus, the less impact it will have on local waterways.

Double Camper Turnover Holds Up Traffic

Double Camper Turnover Holds Up Traffic

It’s rare for a camper to flip over. In this case, two campers that were being transported flipped over on July 18, 2019. Pro-Tow’s heavy-duty towing service was called to Highway 18 near Snoqualmie, WA to help turnover not one, but two new campers that had an accident during transport. They were blocking traffic at the busy intersection at Interstate 90 and Highway 18.

These campers were new, and so, this heavy-duty towing and accident recovery had to be done carefully to prevent further damage. The campers had to be removed quickly as traffic was beginning to jam up. We used a heavy-duty crane style wrecker to perform the overhead lifting. As always, the team worked with safety top-of-mind and was able to get the campers removed from the scene quickly, opening traffic again.

Can Campers and RVs Turn Over Easily?

So, these campers weren’t attached to a truck when they turned over, but if you carry or tow a camper you should still be aware of the slight turnover risk. A lot of factors come into play for your RV to flip. The size of the RV, it’s weight, the direction of any wind and how fast or tight you are taking corners. Even the wind caused by a semi-truck speeding passed can cause a camper to become unstable.

If your camper is going to tip, you might hear a groaning or creaking sound coming from it. You might feel the pull as it starts to go. Therefore, it’s essential to have all passengers in the vehicle with seatbelts fastened, not the camper, when the vehicle is in motion.

What Do You Do if Your Camper Flips?

The first thing you and other passengers should do, if you’re not injured, is to exit the vehicle and get to a safe place on the side of the road. Once you’ve done that, you should contact the police and inform them of the accident, especially if it is holding up traffic. They might come and start to direct traffic while the accident is being recovered.

Then you need to call to have the camper towed away. That’s where Pro-Tow comes in. Regardless of the size of your unit, we have the heavy-duty towing equipment to get it upright, on a flatbed if necessary and towed away. Depending on the damage, you can decide to have the camper fixed or to write it off.

Towing Against 180,000lbs of Resistance

Towing Against 180,000lbs of Resistance

On November 20, 2016, Pro-Tow responded to a call that was both unique and challenging. An excavator was stuck, well, nearly entirely buried at the Howard A. Hanson Dam, Eagle Gorge Reservoir. We calculated about 180,000 pounds worth of resistance to get this piece of machinery out.

Who did the US Army Corps of Engineers call to get the job done? Pro-Tow 24-hour towing from Auburn, WA. This recovery was urgent, high-technical, and very challenging. We were quick to assemble a team of professionals to create a recovery plan for heavy-duty towing, and we had the problem solved within 24 hours.

How Did Pro-Tow Rescue The Excavator?

The excavator was stuck in the middle of some very unfavourable terrain. We had to overcome about 500 feet of this terrain to even get to it. That meant calling in a team of our best heavy-duty towing and accident recovery equipment including excavators, dump trucks, a loader, bulldozer, four heavy-duty wreckers, and two Incident Support and Command post vehicles. We estimate about 200 tons of tow truck capacity was used to get the job done.

With all that equipment came about 20 professionals, including OSHA certified riggers, to plan and execute this technical recovery.

The goal was to solve the problem quickly, without impacting the environment. We rescued the excavator, and no fluids were lost. The environment didn’t suffer any additional damage.

Not An Everyday Tow, But It’s All In A Day’s Work.

An incident like this one does not happen every day, but Pro-Tow has continually been called to assist with many highly technical and challenging problems that require heavy duty towing. These high-profile clients demand the highest standard in safety, skills, certifications, equipment, and work ethic. When there is a challenging problem like this one, the Pro-Tow team can solve it while saving time, money, and the environment.

 

Catch of the Day: An Overturned Box Truck

Catch of the Day: An Overturned Box Truck

A box truck flipped over and landed itself in a creek. When it came off the road, the front end became wedged against a large bush, contorting the box and damaging the connection between the box and the truck itself. This truck accident recovery required a full crane lift to fish it out of the creek. Watch the video to see how we lifted the box and truck with our new crane. It did feel a lot like fishing, and we caught ourselves a big one.

The Main Causes of Truck Overturns

The leading cause of a semi-truck overturn is a centrifugal force. If a truck is traveling along a curved road, that force will cause it to lean away from the direction of the curve. If it leans too much, it can roll over and require truck accident recovery services.

Box trucks like this one are more vulnerable because the trailer has a high center of gravity. How the box is loaded can make a huge difference in stability and safety. If the load isn’t balanced correctly, it is more likely to flip over on the road.

Tips for Preventing a Shifting Load

When loading a box truck, the loaders must be aware of how heavy the load is, and the overall weight distribution of the load in the box or trailer. Stacking loads higher near the cab is a common mistake. Uneven stacking could put too much weight on the front axle. The front axle typically has about half the gross axle weight rating of the rear axle.

Try to keep the load flat and even, and then make sure it is adequately secured. Pallets can shift easily on the road if they’re not strapped down, shrink-wrapped and centered. Always consider how every pallet and box will be contained while the truck is in motion. If the load shifts on the road and the truck is taking a curve, that truck and driver could require truck accident recovery. Contribute to the safety of the driver and everyone else on the road with careful, proper loading before the truck even pulls out of the lot.