A Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and a Ford F-150 were intentionally submerged to prevent flooding.
Immense flooding in California, brought on by high levels of rainfall, has forced a farmer to drive their pickup trucks into a broken levee to stop water from flowing into a nearby community.
A breach in Tulare Lake bottom caused water to flow violently over the damaged levee, putting farms - and potentially homes - at risk. Without hesitation, one individual sprung into action, sending their dependable trucks to a watery grave in hopes of plugging the hole.
In the video posted to Twitter, an aged Chevrolet Silverado can be seen with an overloaded cargo bed for extra ballast. The owner prepares to send the truck to its death by engaging drive and setting it free. V8 engine rumbling away, the Chevy heads off the embankment and crashes into the water with a great splash, joining a Ford F-150 that had already been sent down.
According to Cannon Michael, who originally posted the video, the uncommon idea appears to have worked.
Some have questioned whether this is an ecologically sound idea, as the oil and gasoline from the trucks could contaminate the water. However, Michael replied, "not a solution I would endorse, but water is flowing onto their property. I assume they evaluated other options. Desperate times I guess. Sometimes you have to react quickly, and [it's] doubtful that anyone was coming to help."
The cynics among us will see this as some kind of insurance fraud, but Michael claims the farmer will extract the trucks once possible and has no plans to file any insurance claims. We doubt they would have allowed this to be filmed if they were planning to pull a fast one.
"He is an upstanding member of his community and was doing his best to protect his investment and local residents," added Michael.
We've seen what flood damage can do to a car, so it's safe to assume these trucks - as tough as they are - aren't coming back from this. Based on the last update, it appears the pickups have done a fine job of slowing the flooding down, but more water was reportedly flowing into the basin.
According to Michael, more dirt will need to be added to keep the temporary structures in place. Interestingly, using cars to reinforce Lake Tulare's levees isn't unheard of. Citing a 1997 Los Angeles Times article, Car And Driver reports that crushed cars were used to strengthen the levees during floods that occurred in 1969.
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