Motorhome disintegrates during high-speed chase

By : RVCG Staff June 13, 2019 4 Comments

In a most bizarre situation, the San Fernando/Tarzana and wide area police gave chase to the driver of a stolen motorhome who sped through residential and business area streets trying to escape.  The video has been watched widely but we thought we would share it with you and point out something very important.

The Fleetwood Southwind class A motorhome looked to be several years old by the condition on its roof and overall body design. Please notice the following:

When the motorhome sideswiped a palm tree, the right side of the motorhome easily came apart, showing no structural integrity whatsoever.

Structural integrity is one of the major reasons why we, for over 30 years, have harped on the failure of RV manufacturers to make all RVs structurally safer - and, to-date, they are not addressing this huge safety issues.

Watch the video, if you have not seen it already, and give us your opinions (post comments at bottom of page). Besides the fact that all of us were mesmerized and concerned about the fate of the dogs onboard and all other innocent drivers, our main focus was on the RV's structure every time it hit another vehicle. Click on first photo below to watch video - but first, take a look at the other photos.

RVCG Staff

4 Responses

Gold Toy Box
Gold Toy Box

June 17, 2019

Owned several class C’s over the years and have always felt safe in the front seats (air bags, seat belts, truck frame) but the rest of the rig, not so much. Not sure what is expected of the motorhome builders, we all want more space which requires the use of lighter materials & construction methods. To make a motor home structurally sound as your car, SUV, pickup truck it going to be a very very expensive proposition.
If you take a look at any of the truck rigs (18-wheelers etc) accidents they also come apart pretty easy.
My biggest fear has always been how easy and quickly motorhomes can fire and burn to the ground.

susan o'connor
susan o'connor

June 13, 2019

so are there ANY RV manufacturers building reliable motorhomes?! I follow a Tiffin owners Facebook page and it is replete with stories about
even Tiffin (not an inexpensive RV) bought brand new with ridiculous, sloppy, mechanical defects. Those of you who know about this, please share your wisdom? One day I expect to buy one and want to know what to buy!

Bob Marshall
Bob Marshall

June 13, 2019

I totally agree with your observations. One of the first things I noticed was that the front of the RV was totally falling apart. If my regular car fell apart like that by hitting a tree, the federal government would be all over the auto makers to address the obvious failure of structural integrity. I’m not a big fan of Government involvement in my life, but something MUST be done about this blatant disregard for safety from most of the RV manufactures.

June 13, 2019

Structural integrity of a motorhome might have a rather broad definition. Is there anything already being done in this area as pertains to buses? It seems to me that there must be standards for buses. Are there any federal standards for motorhomes?

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