While we’ve had a few run ins with Murphys law in the northern reaches of Australia here, here and here, other people we’ve met have found themselves standing right next to the fan, often with their mouth wide open when the proverbial hit it. Here’s a list of the top end tales of woe we’ve seen:
1. In Weipa we met a bloke with a very bent Nissan Navara.
The cause of this was undoubtedly overloading the tray and too much tow ball downforce from a heavy camper trailer.
2. We saw a Bamaga local crawling into Bamaga with a very low profile tyre on one of his rims. So low profile in fact it looked like it was all metal.
3. We met a couple on the side of the road near Bramwell roadhouse with a Prado with a broken wishbone and a CV joint lying on the ground looking very sad.
4. Near Musgrave roadhouse we saw a Mitsubishi triton towing a pop top caravan that had flipped completely over on a hairy corner. I’m pretty sure he was going a little too fast.
5. We met a bloke called Les on the Burke development road that had had the front fork on a very expensive BMW motorbike explode going through a pot hole. Luckily he didn’t get hurt.
6. We met a local family of 9 on their way from Arnhem land to Darwin in their Subaru liberty when the top radiator tank split. They’d used silicon to seal it back up and we filed it up with water for them. I’ve never seen so many people in a car before…
7. We met a Canadian yachting couple at Coburg Peninsula that had their injector pump give up in their yacht. We helped tow them off their anchor, they were planning to sail back to Darwin but were a little worried about navigating Clarence Strait without a motor.
8. Also at Coburg Peninsula we met a couple that had a 12 inch split in the bottom of their tinnie. When we got to the boat ramp their boat was under water, including outboard, battery and fridge… We towed their boat out of the water using my tilt trailer and put it back onto theirs for them. The poor bloke used to live at Coburg and was dieing of cancer. This was his last fishing trip to Coburg and his boat was completely stuffed.
9. In Arnhem land we met a local who had done his rear uni joint and propellor shaft on his hilux. Normally this isn’t a show stopper but unfortunately there was something wrong with his front hubs and 4×4 wouldn’t work. We helped tie it all back together with some rope, and gave them plenty of water but at best they were going to be able to crawl at walking pace the 30km to Oenpeli
10. While not a top end tale of woe, in Tasmania we ran into some young blokes that had camped next door to us that had done an engine bearing in their Subaru, by avoiding paying attention to a pesky oil level warning light.
When I’ve been on the side of the road with boat trailer related technical difficulties it’s been surprising how many people drive right past without even slowing down. Even if you don’t have the mechanical knowledge to help someone who is stuck on the side of the road, it’s important to stop and at least offer some water, or offer them a phone call or to pass word that they’re stuck at the next town. Chances are one day it could be you, especially if you tow a trailer or don’t drive a Landcruiser.