The Demise of the LLumar Window Film
The events of 22 July 2012 at Mile Marker 28
In July 2012 Merv, Chris, Jason, Phil and John packaged up our 1/8 scale Hydros and flew off to Seattle to participate in some model racing and some big boat spectating in Washington State. We stayed with and became great friends with David & Rachael Newton in Seattle where the Seafair Unlimited Hydro regatta is held, and with Bob and Paulina Bracket in Tricities. Tricities is about 270 km south east of Seattle, on the Columbia River and is where the Waterfollies Unlimited Hydro regatta is held each year. We had a great time, apart from one minor incident.....
The Brackets had arranged to meet us after our second model race meeting near Seattle, and transport us and our boats to their home in Tricities. They arrived with a “Youhaul” enclosed hire trailer attached to their Dodge Yukon 8 seater truck. After loading up our boats and gear we set off, with Bob taking us through some impressive scenery and landscapes.
Whilst cruising at a comfortable 70 mph on Interstate 82, near a town called “Yakima” the trailer was rear-ended by a drunk Mexican. Some interesting dynamics followed. When the dust had settled our Dodge had come to rest on its side on one side of the Interstate with the front roof crushed down to dashboard level, the trailer was on the other side of the Interstate looking rather the worse for wear, and tools, bottles of fuel, lipo batteries, transmitters, propellers and small bits of my Llumar were distributed over about 150 m of highway. When people say things start happening in slow motion at such times they are absolutely correct.
Fortunately only Paulina suffered any injury, with some glass cuts to her arm. The Highway Patrol guys were excellent and allowed us to recover what parts we could and then transported us all to a motel in Yakima (as a taxi a patrol car leaves a bit to be desired, the rear cabin section is just sheetmetal,!).
Little remained of LLumar and the largest piece, complete with tyre marks, is now nailed up on the Newton’s garage wall alongside many other model remnants that have accumulated over the years.
The cowl, which stayed in the trailer and survived more or less intact, is nailed up in my garage. Thankfully the other five boats we were transporting also all stayed in the trailer and only suffered a bit of bashing and bruising as the trailer rolled off the highway.
Once at Bob and Paulina’s house the next few days involved a fair amount of repair work and much drinking of local beer. Unfortunately Llumar was beyond help and remained in a heap under Bob’s work bench... but the American guys were marvellous and a little later presented me with a laser-cut frame kit for a new Llumar, courtesy of Mike of ML-boatworks.com.