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Be Aware of Afternoon Thunderstorms in the Rockies.... Pay attention to AWNING Positioning!


MAX Burner

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We've just returned from a wonderful trip to the cooler climates of northern NM - Eagle Nest Lake State Park to be exact.  As expected, the higher elevation of the Rockies produce predictable afternoon T-Storms.  We received the typical on-again/off-again 25-30 minute rain every afternoon through mid-evening, FRI - SUN.

Laying in the rack Friday night while listening to light and sometimes heavier squalls pass through the area, we hear a rather loud "BANG" - believe me, if I could hear it; it must have been loud!  The sound was similar to an RV door slamming shut, but much louder.  Grabbing the high-power LED hand-held and self-defense protection, I go out to carefully investigate....

All is cool in and about Casablanca, however, looking to the 5th Wheel nearby, it's clear the couple neglected to either "tip" their awning or retract it all together.  Thought that this would go without saying, but leaving a level awning deployed after hours is asking for a Big Problem.  The 20-foot canopy collect enough water during the evening to snap the drive-control rod freeing it at the forward edge, destroying the forward/rear support arms, and collapsing the awning.  

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We had an interesting chat with the couple over some coffee in the morning.  They're new to RV'ing and mentioned that the awning caper is just another example of "how they roll."  Wow.

There was no way the awning would be retracted with so much damage to the support arms, not to mention the broken control rod in order to get the rig back to TX.  We explained they would need to remove both control arms and slide the awning from its track (about 15' off the ground).

So, we offered to help since they had no tools or a ladder.  We got them road-worthy after about 45 minutes of effort.  But now what to do with the 20-foot awning roller?  He decided to cut it into thirds with my hacksaw and drove it to a local landfill.  The awning was salvageable, but they mentioned they've found one on Amazon along with a couple new control arms.

Oh, well... at least there were no injuries!

Pay attention to WX and Awning positioning, right?

A & D

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Art, Diane, Magnus & Oscar (double-Aaarrf!)

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We just got back from a couple of months in Colorado.  No matter what the weather forecast is, never leave your site with the awning out or go to bed with the awning out.  Wind and storms can pop up any time, even if not forecasted!  It’s a general rule for us that the awning is in when we’re gone or in bed.  Same thing for west Texas and parts of AZ and NM.  Mike

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4 hours ago, Mike and Carol said:

Same thing for west Texas and parts of AZ and NM.  

Concur 100%. Don't EVEN mess with Mother Nature...

We never leave the awning out if we're not within line of sight.

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Art, Diane, Magnus & Oscar (double-Aaarrf!)

  • 2022 TUNDRA
  • 2017 LE II; Hull #226 "Casablanca"
  • HAM call-sign:  W0ABX

ALAZARCOIDLAMSMTNMOKTNTXUTWYsm.jpg

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 I agree with @Mike and Carol, beware of sudden  storms,  anywhere. Always prudent to roll in awnings when leaving for the day, and at night. (Unless you really enjoy flashing night clothes in rain and wind.)

We've seen dozens of flipped awnings over the years. Many, unrepairable. It's very sad.

Don't let it be you. Roll that awning in.

@MAX Burner, kind of you to help. 

They "might" have been able to salvage the fabric, by pulling it out of the slot. Not easy, and you were there, so you know.  May have been/probably was stretched beyond limits, anyway.

The "weatherman" has great job security,  imo. Wrong half the time? No issue. Still broadcasting.  

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8 hours ago, Mike and Carol said:

We just got back from a couple of months in Colorado.  No matter what the weather forecast is, never leave your site with the awning out or go to bed with the awning out.  Wind and storms can pop up any time, even if not forecasted!  It’s a general rule for us that the awning is in when we’re gone or in bed.  Same thing for west Texas and parts of AZ and NM.  Mike

Anywhere, is my creed. 

Just don't be the person who loses the awning, because a sudden,  unexpected storm kicks up.

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12

Florida and Western North Carolina, or wherever the truck goes....

400 watts solar. DC compressor fridge. No inverter. 2 x 105 ah agm batteries .  Life is good.


        
 

 

 

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