How Chinese Workers Transport A Utility Pole Without A Truck

Most of us are so brainwashed by the powerful truck-usage lobbies that we can't even consider any other options to moving things. Got a huge utility pole to move? Then you need a truck, right? But consider this: maybe you don't. This bunch of clever utility workers in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province of China sure as hell don't. They just needed an idea and an iron ox, both of which they had.

The key here is the zen-like realization that the thing to be moved can be the truck. By connecting a small, likely ~12 HP two wheel tractor at the front of the pole, and resting the trailing edge in a two-wheeled wagon, boom, you've got a truck. With one guy to steer and nine co-workers riding at the rear, this clever rig gets a pole and a whole work crew to the job.

I think the real story here, though, is that this is news at all in China. It wasn't long ago that these improvised transportation solutions were used with incredible degrees of resourcefulness and, to Western eyes, danger. The fact that this is making news in China shows how uncommon this sort of thing has now become.

As wealth and safety standards improve globally, more and more of these locally engineered transportation solutions will be discarded in favor of more modern, safe, and, frankly, boring solutions. It's much better for the people who use them, but part of me really loves the innovative vehicles and ramshackle solutions many clever people developed.