I came across an unsettling image while browsing my Facebook feed over the weekend: a Ford Bronco Sport lying upside on its roof at the bottom of a hill in the dark. Its headlights were still on, and from what I could see in the grainy photo, the passenger cell appeared to be intact. The post was made by Thomas Breneiser III in the Rio Rancho Off-Road Facebook Group. Breneiser was the owner of the vehicle and published this plea along with the image.
Hi everyone, I’m fairly new to this group, but I’m really hoping I can get some help. I rolled over my brand new bronco sport while off roading on southern. Luckily everyone is okay, except for the car. I’m very blessed, but I’m hoping some of you guys can help me. I do not have any way of retrieving the vehicle and no tow truck can make it out here. Can any of you help me somehow retrieve it and if not, can you please help me retrieve some of my property that’s left in the vehicle. I took everything of value, but I still have some personal affects. Any help or advise would be so much appreciated. Thank you all so much in advance!!! The coordinates are 35°13'02.8"N 106°51'39.3"W
Those coordinates are for some off-roading trails around the town of Rio Rancho, New Mexico. Breneiser apparently got into some trouble Saturday night while navigating the trails in his Bronco Sport Outer Banks model. He doesn't go into detail about what happened, but it clearly involves rolling down a 20-to-30-foot hill and coming to a stop upside down. We're glad to hear he and his passenger(s) are OK. While they escaped unscathed, the Bronco Sport still laid at the bottom of a hill on its roof.
Gallery: Ford Bronco Sport Off-Road Rescue
The off-roading community of Rio Rancho are some great friends to have, as evidenced by how many offered Breneiser help immediately and sprung into action. By noon on Sunday they had organized themselves and arrived at the scene with more than enough man and machine power to extricate Breneiser's Bronco Sport. We have these photos and video of the vehicle rescue thanks to Rio Rancho Off-Road Facebook Group member Steven C. Lesher.
Another group member, Scott Parker, posted this report after the Bronco Sport's rescue.
Around 1 pm we had a sizeable crew on scene and began assessing our options. Mario Przepiora and I took the lead on this recovery and began to developing a plan to get the vehicle back on its wheels and then getting the vehicle back up the embankment. The angle of the embankment, the lack of room on the trail and the size of vehicles we could get into the site would all become a challenge during the recovery...
... Getting the vehicle back on its wheels was the first task and was fairly easy to accomplish, but getting the vehicle back up the embankment provided some trouble and required some thinking outside the box.
Amazingly, the Bronco Sport was able to start and drive out of the trails under its own power. Again, Scott Parker shares what it took to get going.
The team then went to work on preparing for extraction from the Puerco, the spark plugs were pulled and cleaned and the fluids were checked, thank you to everyone that was able to get the engine working again. This thing started first crank after spending the whole night upside down, amazing. Unfortunately, during the recovery we tore a valve stem on one of the wheels, but once we had the vehicle back on the trail we were able to change out his tire and he was able to drive out under his own power.
What looked at first glance on Saturday night to be a tragedy turned out to be a triumph on Sunday thanks to the Rio Rancho off-roading community. Our direct request to Breneiser for more information have yet to be answered (he's understandably probably busy), but we hope insurance covers the damages so he can get right back to off-roading with all the new friends who came to his aid.