DixPix Photographs

     

INDONESIAN ARCHIPELAGO

 
     
  SUMATRAN ROAD WARS  

 

During the times I was working in Sumatra, namely the latter parts of the 1990's, I seldom was out of the bush on highways.  But whenever I did travel, the number of roadside accidents, usually involving trucks, was astounding.  In part this may have been a result of the Indonesian penchant for passing on blind corners.  A more likely problem, however, is that the great upsurge in illegal logging had put many inexperienced drivers behind the wheels of overloaded trucks in questionable mechanical condition.

 

Some flipped trucks prove a cornucopia for locals.  Others can cause major contamination. Click to see big picture (640x395 pixels; 96 KB)
Some tipped. Click to see big picture (640x444 pixels; 111 KB)
Some rolled.  All are awaiting something big enough to tow them away. Click to see big picture (640x399 pixels; 130 KB)
This one claimed it had to hit the ditch or have a head-on with someone passing on a curve. Click to see big picture (640x443 pixels; 95 KB)
The road here looks wide enough for both trucks, but they crashed anyhow. Click to see big picture (640x389 pixels; 92 KB)
Here the road gave away.  The truck may have been a tad overloaded by the looks of it. Click to see big picture (640x421 pixels; 112 KB)
A drainage gave way, amputating a wheel.  Note trucks lined up due to blocked road. Click to see big picture (616x480 pixels; 133 KB)
And then there are the 'walking wounded'. Crashed trucks still being driven simply because the wheels still turn. Click to see big picture (640x279 pixels; 64 KB)
A complete roadblock lasting days in Suluwesi. Click to see big picture (640x474 pixels; 112 KB)
It helps to have a small vehicle for getting around all the hapless trucks. Click to see big picture (640x392 pixels; 104 KB)
And if you think it is safer to travel by bus, there are also lots of those which have ended badly.  This one put up a tarp to cover the company name. Click to see big picture (640x448 pixels; 109 KB)
Would you prefer to be in a bus that rolls; Click to see big picture (578x448 pixels; 79 KB)
One that burns; Click to see big picture (640x455 pixels; 113 KB)
Or one that simply goes over an embankment? Click to see big picture (640x443 pixels; 72 KB)
Private cars are less often observed in this state, perhaps because they are more agile and more intelligently driven; then again perhaps because they just get towed away faster. Click to see big picture (640x472 pixels; 109 KB)