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Old 03-14-2010, 11:58 AM
garygnu garygnu is offline
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Location: Port Orchard, WA
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How often do those runaway truck ramps get used?

I never hear about runaway trucks using the ramps to stop on the news, but I don't live in the mountains. I drive by three of them whenever I drive home from Reno on I-80.

The last time I saw one on the news was when a police chase in Los Angeles ended when the idiot mistook the ramp in the Grapevine area (I think) for a freeway exit and got stuck.
Old 03-14-2010, 03:05 PM
MikeS MikeS is offline
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It varies:
Colorado has 13 runaway-truck ramps, most of them along I-70 or in southwest Colorado. ... Twelve of the ramps average two or three vehicles a year each. No. 13, the busiest of bunch, is the lower of two ramps on I-70 westbound from the Eisenhower Tunnel toward Silverthorne. That one, on one of the steepest grades of the state's highway system, gets 20 to 30 customers annually.
Old 03-14-2010, 03:15 PM
Astroboy14 Astroboy14 is offline
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(Bonus challenge: Turn off the sound and follow along by reading the Chinese subtitles!)
Old 03-14-2010, 03:15 PM
Cat Whisperer Cat Whisperer is offline
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I've wondered about that, myself. Some of them look completely pants-filling - if that's a better choice than driving out of control down the road, that's some seriously dangerous road!

There are a lot of those around here (we're an hour away from the Canadian Rockies), and some of them look awfully well-used.
Old 03-14-2010, 03:19 PM
guizot guizot is offline
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Originally Posted by garygnu View Post
...the idiot mistook the ramp in the Grapevine area (I think) for a freeway exit and got stuck.
I can't say blame I him. Every time I drive by that thing I must quell an overwhelming urge to drive up the thing just for the hell of it.

And of course he got stuck. Haven't you noticed that the Run-away-truck ramp is one-way only?
Old 03-15-2010, 05:01 PM
janeslogin janeslogin is offline
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Location: Nevada
Posts: 2,169
Between '82 and '94 I only know of once when a real runaway truck used the one westbound down out of Park City. In that case the driver avoided accidents on the interstate but was killed in some mishap on the ramp. (As best I recall the TV news stories, that is what happened.)

Last edited by janeslogin; 03-15-2010 at 05:01 PM.
Old 03-15-2010, 05:02 PM
Bijou Drains Bijou Drains is offline
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I saw a truck in one on I-40 east of Asheville. I did not see how it got there.
Old 03-15-2010, 07:52 PM
John DiFool John DiFool is offline
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Location: Jacksonville, FL
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Of course we have this old legend...
Old 03-15-2010, 10:52 PM
Duckster Duckster is offline
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Originally Posted by Astroboy14 View Post

(Bonus challenge: Turn off the sound and follow along by reading the Chinese subtitles!)
One that works --
Old 03-16-2010, 08:36 AM
ftg ftg is offline
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The scariest interstate grade I'm familiar with is Cabbage Hill on I-84 outside of Pendleton Or. A 2000ft drop. From here.

Emigrant Hill, from mileposts 219 to 228, has historically experienced a plague of crashes. In the five-year period from 2003 through 2007, the area had 51 truck crashes involving a fatality, injury, or disabling damage to any vehicle, including 31 in which a truck was at-fault. The crashes resulted in 21 injuries and 2 deaths.
One can assume that far more incidents were avoided using the runaway truck ramps.

An aerial view. Note that the two sides of the freeway are quite separated in the middle. The hillside is too steep to have them side-by-side. Two runaway truck ramps are highlighted by small rectangles. (Westbound/downgrade is towards the top.)

What makes it especially dangerous for cars (in both directions!) is when you come around a curve and find that the right lane has a truck going 5mph and the left lane has a truck passing it at 10mph. Whoo boy.


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