Breaking rule 1

I used to joke with Tony Borrill, Mark Wilkins and Duncan that rule 1 was “don’t roll the truck” as Nelson is so strong in every direction except upwards as the lifting roof prevents the installation of a roll cadge.
So today, 40km from the end of the park road and 200km from Mombasa the very end of my trip I broke rule 1.
I am still not sure what happened, I was trundling along downhill in third gear, nothing special when the rear of the truck slid left into a ditch I corrected but the whole car kept sliding into a ditch covered in vegetation but turned out to be steeply eroded and about four feet deep. The front of the truck dug in and flipped the truck into a barrel roll down the centre of the road.
I remember saying “oh no, no” and then crunch, crunch, crunch as the car rolled stopping with drivers side facing the air, I remember turning off the engine and thinking “I think I am OK” I clambered out the drivers side window and walked away …..
Then I collected my thoughts
The car was totally wrecked
I reached in and turned the battery isolator
Picked up my phone and wallet
Got the fire extinguisher out ready
Then remembered that I was in the middle of a national park with lions
So made a plan to get back in the car if they came and armed myself with a big stick and knife
Then I called the park authorities who were amazingly helpful once they understood what had happened
Guys turned up and righted the car
The chief of the park arrived with a squad of soldiers
They each checked that I was really OK
They organised for me to stay in a lovely safari lodge and organised a recovery vehicle to pick me up tomorrow at 7am
Amazing wonderful people
So the plan is to stuff Nelson in a container in Mombasa using a big Fork Lift truck and ship him home, the front axel is no longer attached to the truck by much and the bodywork seriously damaged, it will be a major project to fix him up again but I will worry about that once I am home
Quite an end to the adventure
I like to think that something broke on the rear suspension to cause the slide, however maybe I missed a soft spot or a hole, I guess we will never know. Thankfully I was not going fast maybe 30km/hr
What I do know is I am blessed and so very lucky to have walked away apparently unscathed from what was a major, major crash
Now time to work the problem and get me and the truck home!
The truck dig in to the root of the tree on the left and flipped right over landing on the passenger side
Amazingly I climbed out of the drivers window without a scratch on me
One badly bent truck, getting it in a container will need some “adjustment”
The Alucab roof is wrecked and the front axel not attached to the car any longer, as I was blocking the road we had to use brute force to right the truck

About Gerry Mulligan

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