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RAMP DISASTERS

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RAMP DISASTERS

Postby ROBERTH » Jan Thu 11, 2018 4:05 pm

I don't get it on how these cases happen on most of these ramps. When I lived in Florida, the ramps were very slick and I do recall some cars/trucks being pulled out of the water. However, some of these are heavy duty trucks and they are going in deep and the ramps don't look to be that steep.
When they pull them out, they are in park, so looks to me like they are just sliding in!

The ramp I primarily use here in NC is steep, but has pretty good traction. I don't recall ever hearing/seeing one go in here so far.

https://youtu.be/DHTOm4MDSu4
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby No Bail » Jan Thu 11, 2018 11:59 pm

I was present when an elderly man went to launch an 18 foot boat and he did not secure his transmission and the whole rig went in the drink. I felt very bad for him. Who knows why he was launching alone. Perhaps his fishing buddy passed.

I was almost one of those stories of a boat on the ramp without a trailer. I was pulling my Marlin out on a step ramp with my safety chain and heavy strap hooked on to the bow eye. Just as the trailer was starting to clear the ramp angle, the moment of highest stress, a bolt on the winch broke and that put the entire weight on the safety chain. The chain held but the welded loop on the trailer stand did not. It popped open without a groan. Luckily the hand winch crammed on the carrier and it jammed. It gave me just enough time to rig a chain and a few ratchet straps to get the boat on level ground.

I now use a schedule 70 chain wrapped around the steel on the trailer as a safety chain. No more half measures. I'll come home with either just the bow eye or a completely dismantled trailer before that boat comes off the trailer.
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby Lt.Mike » Jan Fri 12, 2018 12:10 am

Lots of things that can cause this. Almost did it myself this past summer. Broke my own rule and released the E-brake before I took it out of park and had my foot on the gas in drive. As I shifted through reverse the brake line popped and I rolled back. Thankfully it was in 4wd do I quickly put it in drive and it climbed up.
Aside from that a lot of ramps get green and slick st the bottom from algae.
If you try to pull at low tide, 2wd, and back into the water or on that green stuff your asking for it.
Remember with weight on the tongue, and the ramp tilting back the weight bias is still on the back wheels. Front wheel braking or traction in 4wd isn’t what you’d think it would be. Again hit that greasy crap st the waterline and your bound to hear the front wheels slide.
The ramp I frequent has a gravel lot which is made up of those little pebbles. They get kicked onto the ramp and become very effective marbles under the tires.
Consider throwing a broom in your truck. If the ramp is covered in trash take a minute to sweep it clear.
You may look dumb but less so than the guy standing by the tow truck posing for s dozen cell phone cameras and awaiting YouTube fame.
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby Lt.Mike » Jan Fri 12, 2018 12:18 am

Looking at the photo I noticed the rust on the axle end. Axles rust from the inside out. Keep an eye on it, I had an axle like that snap and throw a wheel once. You don’t want that.
BTW, I like the chain idea .
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby ROBERTH » Jan Fri 12, 2018 12:50 pm

Yeah, in lots of those views in the video, likely can be tide came in and was lower when it happened. I do recall those ramps in Boca were so slick, that you could not walk on it when tide was low and the green slime was exposed.
I do recall one time while watching the boats go by for the xmas boat parade, one kid went down on the ramp and slid into the water. It was a frantic daisy chain of us holding hands to get into the water and try to get the mom and kid out!

I can't imagine how I would feel when my whole life goes into the drink like this!
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby Lt.Mike » Jan Fri 12, 2018 4:20 pm

Search YouTube for Atlantic highlands boat ramp NJ. You’ll see some video on that for sure. It’s an older steep ramp that always has heavy marine growth below the low tide mark. It’s probably the bench mark for that scenario in our area. I remember helping my brother in law pull his sailboat with a 2wd pickup many years ago at that ramp (about 30). It just spun till we loaded the bed with about 8 guys. Now I wonder how we didn’t launch the pickup that day.
Ever see a big sailboat on a trailer? Wanna talk high center of gravity? :shock:
Following it home in another car I watched the rig start to sway going down a hill, the pickup driver panicked and hit the brakes instead of the gas to pull it straight.
Well we watched it jack knife in front of us. Not pretty.
Yup, if you go to a boat ramp or ride along for stuff like this you can learn of what to do by seeing what not to do. :wink:
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby g0tagrip » Jan Fri 12, 2018 7:59 pm

On some Sunday afternoons the Admiral and I would take our lawn chairs and a cooler of beer down to the ramp and watch the idiots launching and trying to recover their vehicles and boats. It was a hoot! As the Duke use to say "you can't fix stupid".
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby ROBERTH » Jan Fri 12, 2018 10:22 pm

Yeah, we did same at the ramp in Boca as well. Lots of entertainment. Even folks crashing through the drawbridge gates trying to beat the wait. Tires screeching then crash!

Then turn your head and someone was sliding into the water at the ramp. Needed two heads! :lol:

One boat trailer popped off the ball just as the last trailer tire was coming up onto level ground. No chains, then the boat started rolling backwards toward the ramp! We all ran and stopped it only inches before the edge.
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby Fishtales » Jan Fri 12, 2018 10:31 pm

slips and moorings have their issues too.....
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby Lt.Mike » Jan Sat 13, 2018 1:55 am

Fishtales wrote:slips and moorings have their issues too.....

Oh yes they do!
I have a friend that was the terror of the marina when he left or returned to his slip.
Fellow boaters used to scramble to the docks to help him in when they saw him coming.
He once backed in with a high idle so it was going a bit to fast. Instead of bumping it in and out of gear he just tried to steer it in. :shock: I tried my best to fend off the neighboring boat but when a 25’er gets moving it’s a lot of weight to work against. It put a foot long gouge in the other boat. That was bad but we were still moving...we slammed into the floating dock almost hard enough to knock a guy on it into the water. There were three of us on the boat and two of us almost pissed ourselves laughing. Ya I know hitting the boat and the dock isn’t funny but watching that guy yell WTF! While doing the ol’soft shoe along the edge of the ramp definite lightened things up for us. :lol:
He must have bent something in the drive because I heard it jammed in forward gear the next time he left the slip and he ran hard into the opposite bulkhead. I wasn’t there for that one but I heard there was plenty of onlookers that suggested he had a few too many. :lol:
Those first years with him on his boat were an adventure but he’s pretty good with it now.
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Re: RAMP DISASTERS

Postby Lt.Mike » Jan Sat 13, 2018 2:00 am

Oh I’d ad one thing to it all, Murphy’s law rules supreme at the marina.
Whether it be the ramp or slip, you can get it perfect a hundred times but if there’s a crowd to witness somethings bound to go wrong! :wink:
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