Single wide trailer destroyed, 12 left homeless, fault?

You must have heard this story. Woman has every thing she owns in a single wide trailer that she shares with 8 children and 3 adults. She hires “Pancake”, an unlicensed (I would think) home mover to move her “dream home.” Dream home gets stuck less than two miles into the move. Traffic is blocked for over nine hours. Small county sheriff is directing traffic around the mess for most of this time. SCS tries to clear the road and damages the trailer. SCS gives homeowner a chance to clear all important items from the trailer. Road is cleared, dream home is destroyed, Red Cross offers a hotel room for 10 days.

Who is at fault here?

Sheriff did what he had to do. Homeowner did what she could afford to do. Where should the blame line end?

SSG Schwartz

From a legal liability standpoint, I’m guessing the mover. I don’t know what their contract was but he must have at least implied that he knew more about moving a trailer than he actually did.

Yeah it seems pretty obvious to me that the fault lies squarely with the mover. I assume recovering anything from them might be a problem.

It’s the mover’s and the owner’s fault. Clearly, you cannot hire some person with proper credentials to move a friggin’ trailer home for $200. They had no permits and no escort. What the hell were animals and people doing inside the damn thing anyhow? The other option for the sheriff would to have hired a licensed mover and charged that loser woman the several thousands of dollars to perform an emergency rescue move. Was there actually some idiot named Alan Gaunce traveling inside the goddamn mobile home? Fuck, you are clogging a highway for 9 hours. I’m completely behind the actions of the sheriff.

I dunno, maybe laws are a lot more lax in Kentucky than they are in California. I like the fact that they have 12 people living in a single wide, it sounds very homey.

The owner and mover are at fault. Her situation sucks, but being poor means you take chances with greater odds against you than people with enough money to live decent. I’ve seen big disasters before when the gamble for a better life left them sitting in the middle of a pig sty, poke in hand and no pig.

If this appeared on Judge Judy, they’d throw both the owner and the mover out without a penny. Being poor doesn’t excuse being stupid.

My first reaction was along the lines of “what an idiot”

But I am reminded of a case we discussed in one of my business law classes, where a woman signed a contract to buy a TV and ended up paying something like $1500 for a $300 tv, because was entirely uneducated, believed the trusty sales man, and agreed to the payments without understanding what the amount added up to be.

It was an example to teach us the meaning of “unconscionable”. To be fair, the woman in kentucky might be extremely uneducated and have no idea that the price quoted to her was so unreasonable. An idiot for different reasons.

She’s a 35 year old grandmother? :eek:

Yikes. I don’t think this woman ever had a chance.

Stupid people do stupid things, that’s how we can tell them from smart people.

The mover is at fault, IMO, and should be held accountable for the cost of replacing the trailer and for the cleanup.

It sounds sad to me. This is obviously a poor family–one headed by someone who isn’t very sophisticated or wise.

Her plan was quite careless, but I hope she and her brood don’t have to be homeless for long.

Obviously you feel very bad for the children, who have had the misfortune of being born into a family where their prospects are not great.

The woman is clearly very stupid and careless; leaving aside her life skills, because there’s a story there, and just concentrating on this decision, the judgment and intelligence of a person who would move her home and all her belongings by having them pulled by a farm tractor owned by a guy named “Pancake” WITH PEOPLE INSIDE IT ON A GODDAMNED HIGHWAY must be so low that she is, in all likelihood, borderline retarded.

Obviously Pancake the Tractor Man - to call him a “mover” is to insult professional movers - must have broken about a dozen or more laws, so he’s at fault too.

It is certainly NOT the sheriff’s fault, who has demonstrated more patience in the matter than I would have been able to. It’s not his job to protect someone’s ratty-ass trailer from their own idiocy.

Thanks, RickJay, for summing up my feelings so well. If she could afford to buy this place, or to live in this trailer, she should have tried to save up, borrow, or beg for the money to get a proper mover.

If I were the Sheriff, I may have allowed an hour or two to get the trailer moved off the road, but 9 HOURS of the road being closed? I could not do that.

SSG Schwartz


Really… who hires a guy named “Pancake” to move your single-wide up the highway with a tractor?

35 year old grandmothers who help manage trailer parks, that’s who.

I can’t help but think that if she didn’t have the sense to make sure that the idiot moving her house was licensed and bonded and/or had insurance, etc… then she gets what she deserves.

That’s why the states license that sort of thing, you know.

And really, if all you can afford is a $5k trailer home that you only got because of an insurance settlement windfall, then you have no business putting up 8 other people, that’s for sure.

This woman shows a definite pattern of poor decision making. The whole thing ultimately comes down to her fault- she could have avoided the whole thing by hiring someone with the proper credentials and know-how.

Wow. There’s one helluva lack of compassion here today. What happened to all my bleeding heart liberal friends?

Yes, she’s stupid. When did that ever matter? I’ve been an insurance adjuster for almost 30 years and if it weren’t for stupid, I wouldn’t have a job.

I’m not saying that anyone “owes” her anything, but surely you can feel sorry her, no?

I feel bad for her if that helps you. She still has no home.

Like I said, I feel very bad for the kids involved. I’m sorry, but I find it hard to feel sympathy for bad parents who put their children into awful situations, as this clearly is.

Sorry for her? That implies this situation was not of her own making. I can feel bad for the situation she’s in, but she’s the one who put herself in the situation.

If she’d lost the trailer because of a tornado, then I would feel sorry for her.

IIRC, Whoopie Goldberg was a grandmother by 36…

So stupid people don’t deserve our sympathy? It’s not like you can really control being stupid. Clearly there are some bit issues here, and most likely an untreated mental disorder which she will probably never afford to address.

This is a bummer all around.

Untreated mental disorder? Possibly, but I say it’s more likely she really is that stupid.

Ignorance can be fought, but, as Ron White says, you can’t fix stupid.