Now You See It, Now You Don’t

Well today wasn’t one of our best days unfortunately.  We pulled out of our campground in Catalone just after 9 am and headed back toward Sydney on Hwy 22 before eventually turning south on Hwy 4 towards St Peters.  We chose this route so that we could enjoy the east side of Bras d’Or Lake as we left Cape Breton Island.  We hooked up and did our safety checks as we do everyday before hitting the road.  All was in order.   About 10 am as we neared Red Islands, I looked in my left side mirror only to see our Vue totally detached from the rear of phaeton place.  Using my backup camera, I could see the tow bar assembly, base plate, safety cables and part of our Vue’s lower front grill still attached to the hitch and dragging on the road.  I pulled over immediately and watched our Vue roll into the ditch on the opposite side of road.  Thankfully, our SMI brake slowed it sufficiently and it rolled into the ditch without too much damage.  Mercifully, traffic was light at the time and there was no oncoming traffic at the time of our accident.
A passerby stopped almost immediately and gave me a ride around the corner to a tow truck, who pulled us out of the ditch in short order.  To me, the Vue looks driveable, with the exception of the front grill, etc.  Upon close examination of the baseplate (tow bar) it is apparent that welds between the tow bar and mounting brackets used to bolt the tow bar to the front frame of our Vue, gave way.  Once the welds were gone, there was nothing to keep the base plate attached to the vehicle and it simply broke away, taking much of the lower grill assembly with it.  Model BX3328 purchased new with our Vue in May 2007.  I’ve already emailed Blue Ox and will be calling them first thing on Monday morning.
Our Vue was left at the towing yard in Red Island.  Our insurance company will have an adjuster look at it this week.  We are hopeful to have it fixed and back in our hands before we head back to Ontario in early July.  Most importantly, no one was injured and damage does not appear too serious.  Let’s just hope reparations proceed in a timely fashion too.

We are back in Greenwood safe and sound, sans toad for the time being.  The remainder of our trip was uneventful.


  1. Joe & Jeri Goldstein July 22, 2010 at 3:35 pm #


    Saw your post on TRVN and went and looked at your blog. You are lucky! Imagine if someone was coing the other way. It could have been ugly. I'll check my welds every once in a while now.

    Best of luck with the rest of your travels. See you in Q in January.

  2. Greg July 3, 2010 at 9:06 pm #

    Holy Breakaway, Batman! That has got to be one of our greatest fears! Every once in a great while I have the turn signal on and I forget that when I look at the monitor and don't see the Quigley- heart skips every time. I am SO gonna inspect that hookup better from this point on……

  3. Randy and Pam Warner June 19, 2010 at 12:02 pm #

    What a scary time! So glad no one was hurt. We have a Tiffin and a Blue Ox towing system so wonder what went wrong?

  4. Anonymous June 14, 2010 at 11:21 pm #


    I am glad no one was hurt and the damage looks minimal. If you remember I have the same tow car, but a Roadmaster bracket. You can bet I will still check the welds!I hope the rest of your trip is uneventful.


  5. Sharon Del Rosario June 14, 2010 at 12:34 pm #

    Wow! What a horrible experience! We have the same tow bar, but a different car. We're going to inspect ours to see if there's anything coming loose. Hope you get everything resolved soon, and so happy nobody got hurt.

  6. Sam&Donna Weibel June 14, 2010 at 12:04 pm #

    What a scary thing, Thank goodness you guys are alright and the damage is limited to the car, although, it looks like an expensive repair job, just can't imagine the frame coming apart like that, Hope your luck improves and there are no hassles over the repairs. Be safe out there. Sam & Donna.