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Old 08-02-2014, 09:39 AM   #1
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1974 Argosy 20
2014 20' Flying Cloud
Kooskia , Idaho
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Posts: 4,592
How not to test break away switch

On my way back from the RMVAC rally in Gunnison I stopped to get something out of the back of the Jeep. It was on the other side of the tailgate opening, so rather than walking around the TV or Argosy, I decided to step over the hitch, something I don't often do.

When I did, my shoe caught on the break away lanyard and I did a face plant on the gravel. Left knee and elbow are damaged, along with my right wrist and right forehead. The lanyard did pull out of the switch just fine though.

Since my left side is screwed up with the knee damage, I am having a hard time walking. The right hand is barely operable too, so no matter what I do somethings wrong.

A crappy way to travel, everything hurts and is difficult. Walking, shaving, spreading peanut butter with a knife, getting water, using the dump station, all is slow and painful. And typing this post is difficult. You may not be hearing much from me for a while. (I can hear sighs of relief).

So, test the break away switch by pulling out the lanyard with your hand, not your foot and tripping into the gravel.

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Old 08-02-2014, 09:43 AM   #2
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2012 27' Flying Cloud
W , New England
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Ugh! Sorry to hear that! I know I've come close to doing the same thing but have only ended up with bloody knees and shins from hitting the top of the draw bar. You're not alone...

I'm wondering if the extra minute to walk around the truck is worth if :-)

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Old 08-02-2014, 09:59 AM   #3
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1967 26' Overlander
Tulsa , Oklahoma
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That's awful, idroba. Sorry you got hurt out there on the road. A quick search of the forums would have brought up many threads on the proper way to check that switch.
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Old 08-02-2014, 10:34 AM   #4
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1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
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Ouch, ouch, ouch!! Is anything bad enough to warrant a doctor visit?
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
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Old 08-02-2014, 10:57 AM   #5
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2014 27' FB International
Western WA , Washington
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So sorry to hear of your trip & fall, here's hoping for a quick recovery! I'll definitely think twice and take careful aim before stepping over the trailer hitch again.
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Old 08-02-2014, 02:56 PM   #6
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Round Rock , Texas
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Hey pard! I did similar! Ouchie! Instead of face plant, Ithe wrench in my hand dented the trailer as I reached out to steady myself.

So, the trailer has another "character" mArk... Instead of my face.

Get better and hope all is well..
Peace and Blessings..
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Old 08-02-2014, 03:25 PM   #7
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Vintage Kin Owner
Virginia Beach , Virginia
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I'm VERY sorry to hear about your injury. I sincerely thank you for posting though - someone else might avoid the same thing because of your story.

Do your best to heal fast, and while I know you're currently out camping so just remember ICE the first 24 hours, HEAT thereafter. If you've lost a lot of skin on the wrist and hand seriously consider getting a wrist brace (bowling style or medical). It makes it a lot easier to do simple stuff like cut meat or even rest your wrist on a table while typing or playing cards. I still like good old Bactine because it does numb the skin of painful injuries - and over half of the nerves in your body are in your hands and face. Getting a massage could also help a lot with the knee and wrist pain - just make sure the it's certified therapeutic because they often assist even orthopedic patients through their recoveries.

I would also like to thank you for giving me something positive about being to effen old and stiff to even THINK about over the hitch.

I DO cautiously put one hand on the tailgate of the truck, the other on the propane tank cover and step up onto the hitch with one foot, get the other up and over, and then ease myself down on the other side. Alternately I put both hands on the tailgate, step all the way over with my right foot, then trail the left foot --- and in spite of that I did once catch my foot on the break away switch and yank it out trying to disentangle it. No way to fall though.

If you'd like to borrow a "senior skill" that's my adaptive way of being too darn lazy to walk around the truck.

get well soon!

Today is a gift, that's why they call it the present.
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Old 08-02-2014, 03:32 PM   #8
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Ugh. I always walk around the truck (i.e., the long way) when hitched and often wonder if I could just "jump" over the hitch. I've always resisted and now I'm glad that I did.

Be well.


Bob Martel
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Old 08-02-2014, 05:27 PM   #9
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1974 Argosy 20
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Kooskia , Idaho
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Thanks folks for all the sympathy. When you are alone it is nice to know someone else cares. I have thought about never going up and over the hitch, and generally have not for a long time. But occasionally I get too uppity to go around, like yesterday and look what it got me. I am fond of the depressing saying "As I get older, I find myself doing more things for the last time, and fewer things for the first time" I am NEVER going up an over the hitch again. I did that for the last time yesterday. LOL.

At least I am resting in a great FS campground, Stoddard Creek, on the Idaho/Montana border, just off I 15. The campground host was kind enough to take me in her golf cart to the pay post and back. The knee would have been really uptight about that hike. Good 4G Verizon service here.

This is my 15 th night out, all without any hookups including the time at the RMVAC rally in Gunnason. Solar power is great and I have had all the power I need for lights and computer, pump and heat now and then. I have found water and dump stations to take care of that issue.
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Old 08-02-2014, 10:02 PM   #10
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Mohnton , Pennsylvania
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So sorry about your awful for you. Cannot imagine boondocking alone with all your injuries. Please take care & get lot of rest to allow recovery. Enjoy all your posts, so glad your spirits are not dampened too much & you are able to keep in touch. If you were in my neck of the woods, I'd be over with a get-better-really soon goodie basket!

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