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January 21, 2012 5:43 PM   Subscribe

The Truck They Couldn't Drown Watch agog as this Rasputin of Russian trucks conspicuously fails to give up the ghost crossing a Siberian river.
posted by ironjelly (67 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
How the operator kept it from drowning....
posted by Jumpin Jack Flash at 5:49 PM on January 21, 2012


That was epic.
posted by Ritchie at 5:51 PM on January 21, 2012


related?
posted by sswiller at 5:55 PM on January 21, 2012


America summed up in two minutes, thirty-five seconds.
posted by Awakened at 5:57 PM on January 21, 2012


Man and vodka vs. nature.
posted by jimmythefish at 5:57 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


See Also: Snorkel Trucks
posted by rebent at 5:58 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


I just watched it again. It has a first, second, and third act. All in two minutes thirty-five seconds. Quit your day job, Michael Bay. Transformers IV has already been made.
posted by Ritchie at 6:04 PM on January 21, 2012 [4 favorites]


Awakened: "America summed up in two minutes, thirty-five seconds"

Humanity summed up, but yes— you make a good point.
posted by Red Loop at 6:16 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Best comment from YouTube: "TRUCK NORRIS!"
posted by Ron Thanagar at 6:19 PM on January 21, 2012 [17 favorites]


The Enormous Engine That Could

I can, god damn, I can, god damn.
posted by DU at 6:27 PM on January 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


Eh, it's a diesel. Not like you're going to get the distributor wet.
posted by narcoleptic at 6:29 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ahh! In Russia, that's just how they clean the floor mats!
posted by orme at 6:31 PM on January 21, 2012 [8 favorites]


Sure, they looked good getting it out. I'm pretty sure watching them get it in wouldn't be quite so flattering.
posted by unSane at 6:31 PM on January 21, 2012 [8 favorites]


I did that in my 2000 Plymouth Neon once. No big deal.
posted by cjorgensen at 6:32 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Eh, it's a diesel. Not like you're going to get the distributor wet.

Yeah, it's got a snorkel too (left side of cab from the drivers PoV). It looks impressive looking, but as long as diesel engine can get air it's hard to stop.
posted by Packed Lunch at 6:36 PM on January 21, 2012


as long as diesel engine can get air

I also am pretty hard to drown when I can get air.
posted by DU at 6:42 PM on January 21, 2012 [11 favorites]


I was agog, Gog and Magog. (fundamentalist derived humor)
posted by dances_with_sneetches at 6:46 PM on January 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


I get it!
posted by Gator at 6:47 PM on January 21, 2012


Surely, that IS both impressive, and hilarious, But what I couldn't figure out, is where he is going once he gets out. At the end of the video, it looks like he is sitting on a little gravel ridge in the middle of a river, or a sketchy looking gravel bank that must run out. I didn't see a way out. Is there any follow up showing a 100K truck frozen in the middle of no where?
posted by timsteil at 6:55 PM on January 21, 2012


I can't the the only one who was reminded of Newt Gingrich: Headstrong, bulky, and spews pollution.
posted by Kattullus at 7:00 PM on January 21, 2012 [4 favorites]


I'm hoping that MeFi shows better than the numbskulls writing about pollution on YouTube, Awakened's comment aside.

"Eh, it's a diesel. Not like you're going to get the distributor wet."

Yeah. And we don't know if the engine compartment is sealed, either.

Which reminds me that I badly want a Pinzgauer of my very own. Preferably a 712M, mostly because 6x6 is extremely cool and it would freak out the neighbors. The M model because, well, I dunno. Compromise between utility and moving people around when necessary. I'm convinced there is no more capable off-road truck in the world.

"Yeah, it's got a snorkel too (left side of cab from the drivers PoV)."

Well spotted.

"I did that in my 2000 Plymouth Neon once. No big deal."

Honestly, it's possible to keep a conventional gasoline passenger vehicle running when the engine is partly submerged. I've driven a 1989 Mazda MX-6 through about a half-block of water where it was above the headlights and waves were washing over the hood and up the windshield, while water was filling the interior. Yeah, it was extremely foolish of me, but I was 25 or something and even stupider than I am now.

That was electronic ignition, though. If you actually submerge an old-fashioned distributor, you'll be dead in the water.

Anyway, the secret is keeping the RPMs constantly as high as possible. This works best, of course, with a manual transmission where you can work the clutch to do it. Bad on everything, of course, but you'll be more likely to keep the engine running long enough to get out of the water. I did damage the electrical system doing this the time I describe above, though. It would have been worse, however, had the car stalled in water that deep. It was after a local flood.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 7:03 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


In Soviet Russia, river crosses you.
posted by charlie don't surf at 7:06 PM on January 21, 2012 [7 favorites]


It fell apart like the used police car in Blues Brothers seconds after the camera cut away.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:11 PM on January 21, 2012


It's Russia, that guy does that *every day*.
posted by Artw at 7:11 PM on January 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


Totally standard practice.
posted by Artw at 7:17 PM on January 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


Totally standard practice.

What could possibly go wrong?
posted by jimmythefish at 7:20 PM on January 21, 2012


The tank actually contains a mixture of nitroglycerin, high test hydrogen peroxide and radioactive byproducts from the local leaky reactor.
posted by Artw at 7:23 PM on January 21, 2012


The Truck They Couldn't Drown sounds like a Cornelius Ryan book
posted by glaucon at 7:25 PM on January 21, 2012


I have to wonder how it got into that spot in the first place.

Also, DO NOT click on the related video about the Russian teens falling off the tower unless you want to be terrified and have to lie in the fetal position clutching the ground for a while.
posted by winna at 7:26 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Well, we know who was driving.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:26 PM on January 21, 2012


I am confused. Have they not invented bridges yet in Russia?
posted by jacquilynne at 7:32 PM on January 21, 2012 [3 favorites]


Bridges are for losers like Hitler and Napolean. Besides, the wolves ate them all.

Well, we know who was driving.

Her name is Svetlana, and she is very sad, for whenever she lies with a man she leaves him broken like fragile doll.
posted by Artw at 7:43 PM on January 21, 2012 [23 favorites]


Meanwhile, the Trotsky of Russian trucks was rushed to a mechanic's garage after being totaled by an NKVD motorcycle. "I will not survive this attack." said the Trotsky of Russian trucks, "The Stalin of Russian trucks has finally accomplished the task it attempted unsuccessfully before."
posted by qxntpqbbbqxl at 7:47 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


This one is has the awesome sound track among other things
Then there is the Ural...
And the Czech Tatra awesomeness.
Russian redneck monster mudders.
More crazy loggers fording rivers
Who will be the first?
posted by flummox at 8:01 PM on January 21, 2012


And aside from diesel and snorkel, that also appears to be a hinged tractor with 4 wheel drive unlike the airport shuttle van crossing the river in artw's link above.

Though I will admit to figuring out how it was possible while getting a better look at the vehicle, I still had a surprise at the point where I said "and the trailer it's pulling, too? Very nice work, Svetlana".
posted by dglynn at 8:07 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


I am confused. Have they not invented bridges yet in Russia?

Where they're going, they don't need roads.
posted by empath at 8:09 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


It looks like something out of Bill Peet's old books. Not just the struggle, but the way the two drive sections flex back and forth like some sort of lizard as it works its way up out of the water, and the jet of soot blowing off to the knobbly pine trees.
posted by fantabulous timewaster at 8:19 PM on January 21, 2012


DO NOT click on the related video about the Russian teens falling off the tower unless you want to be terrified and have to lie in the fetal position clutching the ground for a while.

seconded - those kids are insane
posted by pyramid termite at 8:24 PM on January 21, 2012


It's called an articulated truck and they can indeed go pretty much anywhere. Southern California Edison uses similar trucks to haul heavy loads up and down the rugged mountain construction near where I live and they are fun to watch.
posted by buggzzee23 at 8:24 PM on January 21, 2012


Call me when the driver belly-flops that sucker.
posted by zippy at 8:28 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


"I am confused. Have they not invented bridges yet in Russia?"

I'm pretty sure this was mostly just joking, but the weird thing about Russia is, well, imagine that Canada had a hell of lot more people, but also most of them to the far south, but developed huge industry and resource extraction far, far in the north, completely without regard to trifling things like the environment and sovereignty and whatnot and ended up needing to move men and materials and equipment across that terrain on a massive scale.

For example, there's almost 200,000 people living in Norilsk. It was a gulag and still now reputed to be a hellhole of cold and pollution.

No one could afford to build that many bridges and maintain them. No one. A lot of this is wet country with seasonal flooding and tundra and mud and endless tracts of forest.
posted by Ivan Fyodorovich at 8:39 PM on January 21, 2012 [6 favorites]


It was alluded to above, but to make it explicit, the air intake on that tractor is higher than the cab. The driver will drown before the engine will.

There are some amazing photos and descriptions of travel in the outer reaches of the former USSR in travel narratives like this and this, which make it apparent that it is a different world up there.
posted by Forktine at 8:48 PM on January 21, 2012 [2 favorites]



Australian fire truck
.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 8:54 PM on January 21, 2012 [4 favorites]


The tank actually contains a mixture of nitroglycerin....

'The Wages of Fear'. A happier ending here than in the movie: everyone gets out alive, although things didn't...well, wendell.  (Couldn't find a clip with English subtitles.)
posted by Kronos_to_Earth at 9:27 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Watch [,]agog[,] as this Rasputin of Russian trucks conspicuously fails to give up the ghost crossing a Siberian river.

Thanks, ironjelly, for sending this to me!
posted by agog at 9:27 PM on January 21, 2012 [2 favorites]


Man, those Ice Road Truckers are such wimps compared to this.
posted by etaoin at 9:40 PM on January 21, 2012


That video of some vehicle here in America during some hurricane (sorry I have no other recollection of details) Seemed a bit more insane. Don't get me wrong, this is neat in it still getting out of the river, but it retreated! It sure looks like it was going across the river, then turned around!
posted by Phantomx at 9:41 PM on January 21, 2012


Sometimes the vehicle wins, and sometimes the river claims its prize
posted by thewalrus at 9:55 PM on January 21, 2012


I am confused. Have they not invented bridges yet in Russia?

I know this is a joke, but to elaborate on Ivan Fyodorovich's great answer, fords are a perfectly respectable low-cost alternative to bridges. In some of the more rural reaches of the U.S., you can find fords on public as well as private roads, and Wikipedia tells me they're in use in the U.K. and New Zealand, too. I tried to google the topic of fords on public roads in the U.S., but the topic was hard to research since most results pertained to Fords with a capital F.

What makes these videos entertaining/scary/stupefying is the truck drivers' willingness to cross the fords in insane water conditions. I imagine they didn't just drive up to a raging river out of the blue one day and decide to plunge in; they probably cross fords routinely at lower water levels, and then it rains and the water gets a little higher and they cross successfully and feel confident, then it rains some more and the water gets higher and they think "it's not THAT much higher than last time" and they cross again and gain more confidence; and so on.
posted by Orinda at 10:23 PM on January 21, 2012 [3 favorites]


This is exactly the sort of socialist realist theatrical display the world needs... more tractors for the 5 year plan!
posted by ennui.bz at 10:25 PM on January 21, 2012 [1 favorite]


Now that's Ford Tough (tm).
posted by Saxon Kane at 10:35 PM on January 21, 2012


I was agog, Gog and Magog.

UNIMOG
posted by Artw at 10:45 PM on January 21, 2012


MAXIMOG
posted by thewalrus at 10:48 PM on January 21, 2012


Now that's Ford Tough (tm).

No, this is Ford tough. Armor standard, turret and fording kit optional.
posted by charlie don't surf at 11:37 PM on January 21, 2012


DO NOT click on the related video about the Russian teens falling off the tower unless you want to be terrified and have to lie in the fetal position clutching the ground for a while.

While we're discussing the related videos, what the hell is that "Sex slavery in Russia" video? I'd watch it, but the thumbnail image for it is the creepiest fucking thing I've seen on YouTube in a while.
posted by chrominance at 11:41 PM on January 21, 2012


Thought it was dead in the water.
But it left us in the wake.
posted by hal9k at 12:57 AM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]


While we're discussing the related videos, what the hell is that "Sex slavery in Russia" video?

It's the creepy story of a 14 year old girl who was kidnapped from Irkutsk and forced into slavery. The video is (most likely; I couldn't actually bear to watch it after reading the captions at the start of the video) her recounting what had happened to her; some time later, her body was apparently found at a construction site in Riga along with those of two other girls.
posted by daniel_charms at 1:11 AM on January 22, 2012


This beast can easily get stuck in snow, though.

I'm pretty sure I know the people in this video.

posted by daniel_charms at 1:55 AM on January 22, 2012


Is there any follow up showing a 100K truck frozen in the middle of no where?

It's called "living in Siberia".
posted by Meatbomb at 2:07 AM on January 22, 2012


Totally standard practice

Made all the more remarkable by the dead log truck trailer visible one minute in.
posted by flabdablet at 4:15 AM on January 22, 2012


No, this is Ford tough. Armor standard, turret and fording kit optional.

You can tell they did some dipping in the parts bin, because it has the exact same mirrors as my pickup truck.

I know this is a joke, but to elaborate on Ivan Fyodorovich's great answer, fords are a perfectly respectable low-cost alternative to bridges

Though with environmental consequences (as well as human, if you try and cross when the water is high). I couldn't watch that clip of the huge tractor tires churning without thinking of the impact on sediment levels, for example.

Something that is apparent in the kinds of travel narratives I liked above is that this is a region that used to receive a lot more infrastructure assistance in the form of bridges and roads, but since the fall of the USSR things have been left mostly to the locals; there's no way to build and maintain that kind of infrastructure on such a huge scale without central coordination and subsidies. So the travel accounts are full of photos of collapsing bridges and roads with huge mudpits; it's a really dynamic and harsh landscape and keeping roads and bridges functioning is not easy.
posted by Forktine at 5:52 AM on January 22, 2012 [1 favorite]


For what it's worth, I don't think anyone actually falls off of that tower, at least as far as I could tell from limited skimming.
posted by feloniousmonk at 7:52 AM on January 22, 2012


No one could afford to build that many bridges and maintain them. No one. A lot of this is wet country with seasonal flooding and tundra and mud and endless tracts of forest.


You don't need bridge. Truck, truck. Truck does what bridge does, and more.
posted by entropone at 8:01 AM on January 22, 2012


Disgusting.
posted by benjonson at 11:42 AM on January 22, 2012


Australian fire truck.

True story: they didn't even need to do that. Look how wet it is out there, there's no way there was a fire, and it was the end of their shift anyway. They were just all "Oh dude we gotta drive through there it will be awesome."
posted by tumid dahlia at 2:35 PM on January 22, 2012


DO NOT click on the related video about the Russian teens falling off the tower

Unless I watched the wrong "Russian teens falling off tower" video, no Russian teens actually fall off any towers.
posted by tumid dahlia at 2:38 PM on January 22, 2012


They don't, but that is what it is titled.
posted by winna at 4:36 PM on January 22, 2012


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