Whenever something is being towed, additional securements should always be attached. This doesn’t just apply to wreckers - secondary attachment chains should be attached even hauling a trailer, boat trailer or camper. These chains are there for an obvious reason: to prevent an accident in the event of an attachment failure while towing. But why does WreckMaster insist that the secondary attachments are always crossed?
It prevents casualty from veering into traffic
Probably the most important information on this list, crossing your chains ensures that the casualty will stay behind your truck in the event of a disconnect from the wheel lift/underrearch.
If the chains were parallel and went straight back to the casualty, they would be able to veer and swing freely in both directions and potentially into other vehicles.
When the chains are crossed, the casualty is prevented from veering too far in either direction and will instead stay behind the wrecker.
NOTE: in the event of a disconnect, be sure to slowly change lanes and reduce speed to avoid the casualty from slamming into the back of the wrecker.
It affects turning
Secondary attachments can be affected by turning in two ways: You can use the shortest amount of chain and it will make less contact with the ground.
If the chains were to be connected parallel and go straight back to the casualty, one of the chains would become too tight whenever turning. For example, when a wrecker turns right, the distance between the left side of the wrecker and the left side of the casualty increases. On the opposite side the chain continues to slack thereby making contact with the ground. By crossing the chains, the amount of chain required is reduced and therefore you will minimize the likelihood of your chains contacting the ground.
They Can go above or under the under reach
When the chains are crossed, whether they go above or below the wheel lift does not matter. Why is this important? It means that securing to the most logical attachment point becomes easier. Cross the chains over the under reach also helps keep the chains from making contact with the ground while turning.
There are benefits to both:
Crossing the chains beneath requires more chain but they will not interfere with any other equipment such as towing lights or scratch the under reach.
Crossing above can scratch the under reach but requires less chain.
Just be sure that whether you cross them above or below the under reach that they will not interfere with any other pieces of equipment, such as the towing lights.