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Old 11-28-2013, 05:39 PM   #1
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Has anybody ever actually lost a toad?

I noticed some supplemental braking systems come with or without an automatic breakaway brake. So my question is, with the proper safety chains / cables, is a supplemental breakaway braking system necessary? I understand that the peace of mind alone is probably with the extra expense and I am sure some state laws require it. However, has anyone of you actually lost a toad while towing it?

Randy
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Old 11-28-2013, 05:55 PM   #2
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I would be interested in this as well.

I saw an article recently about one that got away but not sure they were using the appropriate equipment.
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Old 11-28-2013, 05:57 PM   #3
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About 10 years ago, I met a gentleman in a park that told me he lost a baby blazer in Alaska a couple of years earlier. He said he didn't have it when he stopped for a "rest" and his running buddy and him went back and found it on the side of the road. The tow bar had broken and car made a right turn and ran into a tree.
How he didn't know it is beyond me.
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Old 11-28-2013, 06:05 PM   #4
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I want to add one more element to this question. Lost a toad while towing it with all the appropriate safety chains / cables properly installed?
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Old 11-28-2013, 06:07 PM   #5
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I have an friend in Georgia that had his toad come loose but he was lucky it just ran off into the weeds and stopped. Hardly any damage.
Another friend had one pin come out of his hitch but he saw the toad moving around and was able to pull off without any damage.
I do not know of anyone who lost a toad and it wrecked.
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Old 11-28-2013, 06:08 PM   #6
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Yes.

MH pulled in next to us in camp in Napa Valley with a broken toad hitch. His DW drove the toad into camp. Big mess, nobody hurt.

The toad hitch snapped clean off at the MH hitch while they were driving through town. The safety cables held so it did not totally separate and auto-engage the toad brakes. What was left of the hitch bashed into the rear of the MH.

He said if he had been at highway speed the toad would have totally separated and the toad brakes would have stopped the toad. Otherwise the toad would have been loose in traffic.
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Old 11-28-2013, 06:08 PM   #7
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I have not, but I used to be part of a fire and rescue team and I saw first hand the aftermath of a person loosing his toad.
It resulted in the death of a college student going home for Christmas.
And I suppose the life long devastation of a mans conscience due to his toad coming unhooked and killing another.
Safety first.
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Old 11-28-2013, 06:18 PM   #8
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Not me but a friend driving a 42 Phaeton towing a 4door Wrangler hit a frost heave. One arm of the tow bar broke. He drove with rear camera on and saw it and was able to stop without damage to either vehicle. Tow bar was a 6000lb. rated and the toad probably weighed about 4200#.
And, I don't remember what brand tow bar it was. He replaced it witha 10,000# Demco Excalibar.
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Old 11-28-2013, 06:40 PM   #9
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We pulled into a rest area for lunch and walk the dog. After we got back underway and about a mile down the interstate in the rear view monitor I saw the toad wandering wildly back and forth. We got stopped and when I checked the tow bars I found one pin missing and the other pin was missing the keeper and had worked its way almost to the point of coming completely out. Our toad was probably seconds from departing from the coach.

I did not have the emergency breakaway feature on that trip, but I sure got one installed before the next trip. I also bought a set of keyed alike locks for the pins. I'm sure some sick wacko got a laugh out of thinking he/she pulled a fast one on us.
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Old 11-29-2013, 05:19 AM   #10
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Does almost loosing a towed vehicle work here. Two years ago while we were returning from Canada we had both tow dolly straps unhook after hitting a series of short quick dips in the highway. We had just left Fort Meade campground outside DC and had only gone about 5 miles when it happened. We had traveled the previous day from the Boston area and had not taken the car off the dolly while there. I checked the straps as I do every time we stop and every thing was attached properly. We are very thankful for the trucker who signaled us that there was something wrong and for the safery chain that we had attached between our Kia Sorento and our tow dolly because that safety chain is the only thing that kept the car on the dolly. Sure did not take me long to devise a system that would prevent the straps from unhooking . ...Alan
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Old 11-29-2013, 07:55 AM   #11
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Sometime over the last couple of years there was a post here by someone who's Jeep Wrangler completely separated from the motorhome. He did not have the break-away switch and the Jeep went "cross country", through a fence into a cow pasture, rolling and tumbling along the way. He was lucky it happened out in the middle of nowhere rather than in a busy urban area or on a freeway where someone could have been killed by the 4500 lb missile.

It is rare for a vehicle to completely separate, but it does happen. Even if you have all the insurance in the world, you don't want to have to live with the responsibility of having caused a family to lose one of their own. Have a break-away system installed.
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Old 11-29-2013, 08:04 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigd9 View Post
We pulled into a rest area for lunch and walk the dog. After we got back underway and about a mile down the interstate in the rear view monitor I saw the toad wandering wildly back and forth. We got stopped and when I checked the tow bars I found one pin missing and the other pin was missing the keeper and had worked its way almost to the point of coming completely out. Our toad was probably seconds from departing from the coach.

I did not have the emergency breakaway feature on that trip, but I sure got one installed before the next trip. I also bought a set of keyed alike locks for the pins. I'm sure some sick wacko got a laugh out of thinking he/she pulled a fast one on us.
Great point!

There are wackos out there who delight in pulling hitch pins.

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Old 11-29-2013, 08:17 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bigd9 View Post
We pulled into a rest area for lunch and walk the dog. After we got back underway and about a mile down the interstate in the rear view monitor I saw the toad wandering wildly back and forth. We got stopped and when I checked the tow bars I found one pin missing and the other pin was missing the keeper and had worked its way almost to the point of coming completely out. Our toad was probably seconds from departing from the coach. I did not have the emergency breakaway feature on that trip, but I sure got one installed before the next trip. I also bought a set of keyed alike locks for the pins. I'm sure some sick wacko got a laugh out of thinking he/she pulled a fast one on us.
Thank you for the reminder that we have sick wackos out there. I didn't want to use a padlock instead of pins, just in case I need to unhook the toad real fast to back up. But your post here has me rethinking it. I know that from now on I will surely check the pins EVERY TIME just before I drive off after stopping or when I see anyone around my rig. I generally always gave the tow bar a visual scan but never counted the pins. I will now! Again, thank you for sharing your story.

Randy
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Old 11-29-2013, 08:29 AM   #14
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Toad brakes controlled by the motorhome along with a breakaway are required in some states and Canada. deSanford PS if you have "pins" carry a couple of spares just in case some wacko takes yours.
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