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Old 06-28-2007, 10:02 PM   #1
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Thumbs down LA Times article slams U-Haul, states surge brakes would prevent sway

The Los Angeles Times ran a three-part series this week on U-Haul.

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The article was written by people who clearly know nothing about towing. They described several accidents, and you could practically hear a tiny violin playing as they described the effects of the crashes and blamed U-Haul equipment. However, the article glossed over driver errors over which U-Haul has no control, such as, driver drifted then overcorrected, driver speeding, passenger grabs wheel, driver loses control due to sway and gets back on the road without redistributing load, driver accepts trailer despite visible problems, and injured/killed persons not wearing seatbelt.

The articles asserted more than once that allegedly bad surge brakes contributed to the sway-caused crashes!

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-SilverSausage
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Old 06-28-2007, 10:11 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SilvrSausage
The Los Angeles Times ran a three-part series this week on U-Haul.

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The articles asserted more than once that allegedly bad surge brakes contributed to the sway-caused crashes!

Discuss?
-SilverSausage
I didn't want to register just to read the article, so I'll take your word for it. I know from experience the "slop" in some surge brake tongues can contribute to sway, but I also know if you obey U-Haul's speed limit of 45 mph it will not be a huge issue.
Strangely, our Interstate has a minimum speed of 50, so if you use their equipment on the Interstate here, you are either violating U-Haul's contract terms, or the minimum speed limit. Guess which case I see more of...
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Old 06-28-2007, 10:21 PM   #3
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Hi, as Terry said, U-Haul trailers have stickers on them stateing "45 MPH Max speed." I have seen many U-Haul trailers on our freeways doing anywhere from the 55 MPH trailer speed limit to over 65 the MPH maximum speed limit.
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Old 06-28-2007, 11:42 PM   #4
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Not unusual these days to read an article that someone wrote who is completely ignorant to the subject at hand.
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Old 06-28-2007, 11:52 PM   #5
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I've rented U Haul trucks and trailers.

I've never had sway issues or equipment failure. Nor did I use WD hitches.

It might be luck or it might be that I drove 55mph and left more space between me and the car in front.

I may well be wrong but I suspect that people who have not towed much or at all did not modify there driving habits to account for the trailer.

Now its true that 15-20 years ago U Haul trucks had undersized wheel studs that did cause accidents. Mostly I think the truck accidents are from people who did'nt account for the high center of gravity or increased stopping distance.
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Old 06-28-2007, 11:57 PM   #6
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I have only read one of the articles, but what I took from it, was that several judges discovered that Uhaul had a problem retaining evidence involved in accidents, such as tires, wheels, trailers and trucks. This is even after being told by the court to retain the evidence.

Bill
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Old 06-29-2007, 12:12 AM   #7
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Bill, They disposed of potential exhibits against the Courts orders!

Judges and Juries do not like that at all.

I despise the L.A. TImes but I'll read the article.
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Old 06-29-2007, 12:20 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goin camping
Bill, They disposed of potential exhibits against the Courts orders!

Judges and Juries do not like that at all.

I despise the L.A. TImes but I'll read the article.
Milo,

yes, I know and the judges said "judgement for the plaintiff"

Bill
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Old 06-29-2007, 12:55 AM   #9
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Milo,

yes, I know and the judges said "judgement for the plaintiff"

Bill
There you go. Rule #1 in Court. Don't tick off the Judge. Bad things will happen to you.
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Old 06-29-2007, 02:15 AM   #10
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#1 rule... yeah right!

#1 rule is NOT 'don't pi** of the judge'.... it is keep up with the R**ers....

Saw 3 different rigs with trailers in tow.... One was a Uha*l and 2 were something that rhymes with Sider....

All 3 were over the posted limit (in a SERIOUSLY constricted construction zone with a posted 45 mph limit - DOUBLE FINES!!!)....

In fact the Uha*l and the 'S*der' were seemingly 'racing' down the construction zone with 70+ as they're minimum needed speeds.... One was a 26+ footer with a 4runner on a 2 wheel dolly - the other was a 24 - 26 Ft'r with a S-10 on a full trailer....

Just astonishing to see the disregard for the safety zone, not to mention the speed limit, and the downhill terminal velocity these things can develope... Just PRAY for no emergency manuevers.....!!!!!

OK, back to the regular thread..... soap box getting pushed back to the corner....

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Old 06-29-2007, 08:11 AM   #11
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I personally have had no problems with U-Haul's trailers, probably because I read and obeyed the instructions that were given me. I have, however, had major problems with both their and Ryder's trucks.
U-Haul's truck blew an engine 100 miles into a thousand mile trip, had to transload everything, a major PITA. Ryder was more serious, I had a complete electrical failure causing loss of brakes on one of their biggest moving vans, with my Ranger in tow on an Interstate off-ramp. Went through the intersection at the bottom of the ramp @ 50mph, knocked down some traffic signs, and about 60 feet of chain link fence across the street. No traffic, or it would have been a "film at eleven" scene.
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Old 06-29-2007, 09:48 AM   #12
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I've been behind a single axle U-Hall being pulled by a Chevy Caprice. U-Hall started into a yaw on a straight stretch of highway and within seconds the guy hit the brakes and lost control. By the time he stopped the car was perpendicular to the road on the shoulder and his passenger was looking at the trailer which was 90 degrees to the car. He was doing about 60 at the time the yaw occurred.

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Old 06-29-2007, 12:17 PM   #13
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Uhaul, Urisk it!

The scarier part of the article in my view, is that they exposed the lack of oversight when hooking up tow dollies. I have seen dozens of inexperienced drivers tow a vehicle, with another, that clearly is does not posses the capacity to do the pulling. We all know the parameters here of how much weight we can tow safely with our airstreams. The company's bottom dollar drives the business, while putting all of us in the road at risk. They rather keep the $39.95 than to tell the customer that his Ford Ranger can not tow the Ford Tempo.
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Old 06-29-2007, 12:52 PM   #14
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Not shocking. I'd be shocked if there weren't lawsuits from the ambulance chasers over it.

I've used U-Hauls for decades on and off, and following the rules and not driving like I stole it has proven uneventful each time.
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