Wow, this kid is lucky beyond lucky. That big steel hook that you see partially through the windshield of the Chevy truck that “stars” in this video was heading right for a guy’s face before the glass intervened and saved him. At best it would have caused catastrophic injuries. At worst it would have hit him so hard in the head that death would probably have been instant…if he were lucky. This is a video that demonstrates virtually everything you should never do with a steel winch cable. From using it as a snatch strap to not using the hood to provide some sort of ballistic barrier in the event of a failure. Hell, even the guys standing to the side and back of this thing were in striking range of the cable itself, right?
First off, let’s address the use of a steel cable as a snatch strap and why that is a horrible idea. A real snatch strap is designed to act like a massive rubber band to some level and both cushion the jolt of a the pulling truck and also to amplify the energy by using both the truck pulling and the strap contracting to remove the stuck truck from the mud, sand, rocks, whatever. A steel cable does none of that. It has very little stretch, give, or ability to absorb anything at all. You’ve never seen a winch that reels in at like 40mph, right? Secondly the fact that they didn’t at least open the hood to catch the hook (in the event that it flew) was another fail. Yes, the inside of the hood would have dented, but that hook is not going to penetrate steel, no matter how violent the hit. The last thing is that the guys filming, the guy directing the operation, and other people were clearly within range of that cable depending on how it broke. If they had hung any sort of weight on it before going to yank on the stuck truck it would have completely changed this situation…but they didn’t and now we have this sweet “how to” video.
Best part of the whole thing is at the end when the guy says, “You know how they talk about winch cables killing people?” WOW.