GOLD BEACH, Ore. — If you’re going to drive a 50-ton battle tank, remember that you may need more than the owner’s manual to make it work. A 58-year-old Curry County man learned that lesson the hard way last week, said Lt. Gregg Hastings of the Oregon State Police.
On Nov. 27, a truck driver transporting a 1969 Chieftain battle tank found that he was unable to climb a steep grade near Gold Beach. So he unloaded the tank, which was the United Kingdom’s main tank back in the 1960s, at the Myers Creek Wayside along U.S. 101. The tank was purchased by a local resident.
The 1969 Chieftain battle tank after its wild ride through two guardrails. (Photo courtesy Oregon State Police)
Although he had no experience driving a tank, Jeffrey Glossop of Pistol River, who works as a caretaker for the man who bought the tank, figured he could get it up the hill. “He had the manual, so he thought he could do it,’’ Hastings said.