Righting Your Rig: Getting Your Overturned Tractor Trailer Upright

Overturned Logging Truck

Inevitably, mistakes can happen when you’re rolling the open road. And that means accidents. One of the scariest, most dangerous results can be a semi rolling, causing potential fires, injuries, fuel leaks, spilled cargo, and more. It’s a mistake you hope not to make, but in the event that you do, there are some important things to know.

An over-turned semi-tractor trailer or tanker truck presents extraordinary challenges when it comes to clearing the scene and getting that rig upright again. There are a few methods of righting a tractor trailer, some better than others:

• Heavy-duty tow trucks
• Recovery truck with rotator
• Air cushion recovery system
• Crane

By far, the fastest way to right an empty or partially loaded semi is the recovery truck with rotator option. Not only do they not require the assistance of other equipment to complete the task, they can do the job in restricted spaces, and can operate in fewer travel lanes than other vehicle recovery systems. If your truck is fully loaded, then the air cushion recovery system is your best bet. This method is faster than manually off-loading your cargo, and then trying to right the rig.

Obviously, your options will depend mostly on the availability of equipment in the area of your accident, however it is nice to know what those options are. In most cases, you’ll be relying on a heavy-duty tow truck or two.

The procedure for righting your rig is delicate and time consuming – but followed carefully, should be successful. In the below video, you’ll see just how slow this process can be – and in this case, the truck isn’t even overturned!

Now, as you can see from the above video, this process is best done slow and steady. Now check out the below video, and you’ll see what going too fast can result in:

Righting a rig that has overturned is an arduous process and takes quite a bit of time. But at the end of the day, working slowly and diligently will take less time than if the clearance method is done too quickly or sloppily and results in another accident. Take it slow and steady, and your rig will be right in no time!

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