Log Bridge Dangers

Traveling around the Ubangi-Mongala area will bring you to having to cross questionable log bridges.  And when you have to cross them at night the uncertainty increases.  This situation in the short video took place in latter June on my trip to the CEUM administrative council meeting.  I was following another CEUM truck and they crossed fine, but as they completed the crossing the outside log on the driver’s side, R in the video, moved out and their rear wheel started to slip in.  The other driver and our helper worked to put the log back in place and secure it.  Now watch me.

I slowly crept out on the bridge carefully watching my guide.  He wanted me to get back a bit to my right which I was doing.  I stopped.  We looked and discussed things and I crept on.  And then, SLIP-KATHUNK; the log had moved, my front tire slipped as did the back.  Of course it was night.

Thankfully the bridge was not high in the air and the water was not deep so guys could stand in the stream and jack the truck.  We used the jacks from both trucks to slowly jack the front and back up high enough so that we could move the log back into place and secure it.  We used other logs we found to block the truck up in the air.  Once we had the log back in place we wrapped the tow strap around the log and secured it to the rest of the bridge.  I then completed the crossing with no problem.  I’m grateful for tireless helpers to get this done.  We spent about 3 hours getting the job done and completing the crossing.

On our return people had gone ahead and secured the outside log, now on the Left in the picture.  They creatively used bicycle chains nailed to the logs to hold them together.  It was dry and secure and we had no problem.

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