TORONTO, Ont. — The treacherous kilometres of B.C.’s Coquihalla Highway will be getting their close-up starting next month when the Discovery Channel premieres its new “Highway Thru Hell” TV series.
The new show follows the team of heavy rescue tow truck drivers at Jamie Davis Heavy Rescue as they fight to keep open the 100-kilometre stretch of highway running through B.C.’s Cascade Mountains – touted as one of the most inhospitable trucking routes in North America.
The series premiere, titled “Death on the Coq,” features Jamie Davis Heavy Rescue’s “A” team, Adam Gazzola and Kevin Ritchie, spending a busy morning clearing spun-out semis off the road when word comes that a multi vehicle pile-up has closed down both northbound lanes. While Gazzola scrambles to get the highway open, Davis tries to free a semi from a steep, icy off-ramp. By sundown the crew is exhausted, but the Coq isn’t done with them yet. At 3 a.m., a five-semi wreck at the top of the mountain sends Davis and his 16-year-old son Brandon fighting their way through the traffic backup. This is Brandon’s first night wreck – and the hard reality of heavy rescue towing is driven home when he discovers a driver under one of the trucks, dead.
In addition to the men of Jamie Davis Heavy Rescue, the show’s producers are calling the team’s vehicles the “undisputed co-stars” of “Highway Thru Hell.” One such vehicle, Rescue 52, features a fixed 30-tonne crane, and two powerful winches which extends the reach of the truck for hundreds of metres. “It would take eight standard tow trucks to match the capacity of this single heavy wreck mover – a vital part of the rescue arsenal when a jack-knifed rig is dangling from a 120-metre cliff,” said a recent release from the show.
The original eight-part Canadian series is produced by Vancouver’s Great Pacific TV and will premiere Sept. 4 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on the Discovery Channel.
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