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Trucks! (episode)

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This article is about the fourth season episode. You may be looking for the first season episode, the characters, the Story Library book or the song.
"Now if you were ill you couldn't shunt trucks, could you?"
— Gordon speaking to Sir Handel
Rusty Helps Peter Sam

David Mitton


Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Reverend W. Awdry
Britt Allcroft
David Mitton


Michael Angelis (UK)
George Carlin (US)

Air date

October 25th,
1995 (UK)
May 1st,
1996 (AUS)
October 14th,
1996 (US)

Previous episode

Peter Sam and the
Refreshment Lady

Next episode

Home at Last

Trucks!, retitled Rusty Helps Peter Sam in some American releases, is the eighth episode of the fourth season. It first aired on Mr. Conductor's Thomas Tales in 1996 in the US.


Harold the helicopter, returning from his daily inspection, spots a little diesel coming round the mountain. The diesel is Rusty, come to help on the Skarloey Railway, and despite his friendliness, Rusty has little time to chat, and regards Harold as being cheeky. Peter Sam and Sir Handel are glad to see Rusty, but Sir Handel remains his usual grumpy self. The trucks dislike Sir Handel, and repeatedly play tricks on him, making him dislike working with them.

One day, Gordon advises Sir Handel, that if he were ill, he couldn't shunt trucks. Sir Handel takes the hint, and when he feigns an illness the next day. Peter Sam and Rusty are allocated his trucks, but Peter Sam doesn't mind the extra work. They take the trucks to the slate quarry, and the incline, a contraption that winches loaded trucks down a steep hill, the leverage pulling empty ones up, ready to be loaded with slate tiles. Peter Sam waits for his full ones at the bottom of the hill. But the loaded trucks mistake him for Sir Handel, and break their metal chain coupling, zooming down the slope and smashing into Peter Sam.

Rusty helps Peter Sam out of his mess, but the damage Peter Sam sustains cracks his funnel and dents his boiler. The Fat Controller punishes Sir Handel for lying, by making him do his, and Peter Sam's work. After clearing away the wreckage, Rusty heads back home, where he spots Harold again. This time Rusty mimics Harold from their previous meeting and uses his phrase, "Well done, cheers, and keep up the good work!", before puffing away




  • This episode is based on the story of the same name from The Railway Series book, The Little Old Engine.
  • In the original UK VHS release, the heavy impact of the trucks hitting Peter Sam is much louder than the re-released version of the episode. Some lines are also indicated that they were later redubbed or moved in later.
    • "'Bust my buffers', exclaimed Rusty. 'Never mind Peter Sam, we'll get you out'" is heard later.
    • "'Splendid to see you again,' whizzed Harold. 'I'm completing my evening's look-about' is heard earlier.
    • "'Well done,' replied Rusty, 'Keep up the good work.' "And the little diesel purred back home" sounds less enthusiastic.
  • In the US version, much of the music and whistle sounds are missing and Peter Sam's whistle is much higher pitched than usual after the crash.


  • When Harold speaks to Rusty, his battery latch is visible underneath him.
  • When Sir Handel shunts trucks, the sound is noticeably off.
  • As Peter Sam puffs away with the trucks and coaches, he has Skarloey's whistle sound.
  • When the rope is connected to the empty trucks, it becomes taut like it is being pulled, but in the next scene, the trucks at the top of the slope are stationary.
  • The trucks' faces are missing when they crash into Peter Sam.
  • When Sir Handel says "I didn't think", his left eye sticks and drops back into his head.
  • On the Thomas' Trackside Tunes and other Thomas Adventures VHS/DVD and PBS Kids Sprout airings, this episode is called "Trucks" instead of the American title.
  • Before Peter Sam leaves the yard with his coaches and trucks, a small hair can be seen by his wheels.
  • When the empty trucks say "No, no, it's Peter Sam!", the two in front bounce slightly.
  • Before Peter Sam is pulled out of the wreckage, his funnel isn't cracked like it is later.
  • When the coupling snaps in the US version, a voice can be heard saying "Whoa".
  • When the narrator says "He did so next morning." Percy quickly passes the little engines. In the next shot however, he is passing them again.
  • In a few rare pictures, Harold's spinning rotors are a transparent disk, unlike in the actual episode.
  • In the UK version, Gordon has Duck's whistle sound, Sir Handel has Rheneas', and Rheneas has Duke's.
  • In the US version, George Carlin says "Peter Sam shut his eye", leaving the 's' off the word "eyes".
  • When the trucks crash into Peter Sam, they appear to crash into him again, showing that the footage was cut.

In Other Languages

Language Name Meaning
Spanish Furgones Trucks
German Keine Lust auf Arbeit No Desire to Work
Norwegian Godsvogner Trucks
Brazilian Portuguese A Mentira Tem Pernas Curtas The Lie Have Short Legs
Japanese サー・ハンデルのけびょう Sir Handel's Feigned Illness
Finnish Tavaravaunut Freight Wagons
Czech Vagónky Wagons
Italian Carri! Trucks!
Welsh Tryciau Trucks
Dutch Goederen Wagons Goods Wagons
Hungarian A haszontalan tehervagonok Useless Wagons
Chinese 货车厢 Freight Cars
Slovenian Tovorni vagoni Freight Wagons

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