Skip to content

U-Haul Driver Survives Bizarre Crash, Lands Vertically, Trapping Him 15 Feet Straight Up

Questions continue to outnumber answers.

A driver of a U-Haul truck managed to crash the vehicle in a completely vertical position off a North Carolina highway, trapping himself in the driver's seat, 15 feet in the air. The bizarre configuration of the wreck has "captured the imagination of social media," the News & Observer reported, "and questions continue to outnumber answers." Read on to find out what led to the crash and what answers authorities have been able to offer so far. 

One Box Truck, Standing Straight Up

North Lenoir Fire & Rescue/Facebook

The crash happened shortly after 2 a.m. on April 28 on Highway 70 near Kinston, North Carolina, about 80 miles south of Raleigh. First responders found the truck sitting on its tailgate and the driver sitting 15 feet straight up.

"Crews arrived to find a U-Haul box truck standing straight up on the side of the road with a vehicle in tow," Lenoir County Fire & Rescue posted on Facebook. "The occupant was assisted in exiting the vehicle and there were no injuries."

Many Details Murky

North Lenoir Fire & Rescue/Facebook

Authorities haven't said much else. For example, they haven't revealed the identity of the driver, how first responders got him out of the truck without tipping the vehicle, or how the crash happened in the first place.

McClatchy News reported that officials hadn't responded to requests for comment as of May 1. Among the few details available: Storms were crossing the state at the time of the crash, and the 22-foot-long truck managed not to sustain visible damage when it came to be planted nose-up in the field. 

Social Media Responds: "New Space Program"


In the absence of further detail, commenters took to social media to ask questions—most along the lines of "How in the world???"—and have some fun with the situation. "I got 10G says they can't do it again," one man said on the Fire & Rescue Facebook post.

"La Grange new space program is off to a great start," another said. "It looks like Elon Musk has partnered for UHaul for faster service," another wrote. "Best $56 anyone spent on insurance," one woman observed.

Another Wild Crash Leaves Driver Dangling


The person behind the wheel of the U-Haul wasn't the only truck driver to find himself in a precarious position recently. On April 12, the driver of a tractor-trailer failed to negotiate a turn and ended up dangling off an interstate bridge.

At about 3:45 p.m. Kostas Hobitakis approached a turn on I-79 near South Strabane, Pennsylvania. He braked to slow the semi-truck but said the truck kept going too fast. The truck crossed from the right lane into the left and skidded out of control. 

"It Kind of Didn't Look Real"


The trailer rolled onto its right side, and the entire truck skidded hundreds of feet, crashing through a concrete wall and dangling over another highway five stories down. Hobitakis broke through the windshield and clambered out of the truck uninjured.

After he escaped, he couldn't believe how much of the trailer was hanging off the bridge. "I'm like, 'Oh my God!'" he recounted to the Washington Post. "It kind of didn't look real. It looked like a movie."

Filed Under