What kind of truck accident has seriously damaged interstate highway around downtown Birmingham, Ala., about 30 times since 1987? Flatbeds dropping steel loads, usually coils, whether by rollover, jackknife, securement failure or other problem.
Most of these have happened at the intersection of I-20/59 and I-65, known as Malfunction Junction. The repair cost averages $200,000 to $300,000 per incident, according to bhamwiki.com, an online encyclopedia.
An hour away in Overdrive’s hometown of Tuscaloosa, Ala., WTI Transport does a good job of teaching its drivers coil securement to ensure they don’t join the legacy of Malfunction Junction mishaps. I recently accompanied Overdrive Equipment Editor Jack Roberts to WTI, where Safety Instructor Gene Sims walked us through the conservative coil securement methods he teaches.
Here are photo highlights, as well as a video of Sims explaining proper chain and strap application for a coil mounted in a “shotgun” position, where the hole runs parallel to the trailer.
[youtube ckFSKTno2lw nolink]
Affected trucks include model year 2008-2018 Freightliner Cascadia and Western Star 4700, 4900, 5700 and 6900 trucks. DTNA says after hard brake applications, the brake light pressure switch may not activate the brake lights with the light application of the brake pedal.