Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Rollover at Shell Reef

As mentioned in an earlier post, this was my first trip to Ocotillo Wells. When I heard we were heading to a fossil site known as Shell Reef, I set up my camera to take pictures of rocks. Little did I know that the other end of Shell Reef is a steep hill that is a popular site for off-roaders to hone their climbing and descending skills.

As we arrived, I realized that a lens change was in order, so I put the grenade launcher on and stepped from the jeep. Seconds later, I captured the sequence below. I didn't have time to set up the camera so I went with what I had.  I got very lucky, the settings were close enough to get usable images, though far from perfect.

Click on the images to enlarge.

I missed the first part of this, this was taken as the driver almost
saved it after getting sideways coming down the hill. The left front 
wheel is hitting the berm, though it is still parallel with the right.

Notice that the front wheels are no longer parallel. Trouble comin'.

And awaaay we gooo... Notice the passenger's hands firmly 
grasping her shoulder straps. That prevents injuries like those
described in the last post. She's trainable.

1/7 of a second later, hands still affixed to the straps. Well done.

The passenger's eating dirt, the driver is looking at what's for lunch.

The world turns brown.

Now, the driver gets his.

And they walked away. THAT'S what everyone wants to see.

I gave the blog address and my e-mail to some people who were with these folks and received an email from them a few minutes ago. Other than a bruised shoulder from the shoulder straps, no injuries were received. 

The failed steering knuckle appears to have had a hairline crack in it before the event, the roll-cage and frame of the Rhino were damaged in the rollover. The safety equipment did it's job, as always, I'll swap steel for flesh any time.

Anybody who has spent any time in the dirt has had something similar happen, though maybe not as severe. Safety equipment and gear reduce the risk, the above images prove that. I am really glad that the people in the above images were not injured, hopefully they will get a chuckle out of the images. It might take some of the pain away from visiting the parts store.

Thanks for reading,

No comments:

Post a Comment