Thomas the Tank Engine Wikia

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, the Engine Adventures book or the song.
"No one understands our feelings, and if you were ill, you couldn't shunt trucks/cars, could you?"
"Good idea! I'll try it!
— Gordon encourages Sir Handel to be ill

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


Harold the helicopter, returning from his daily inspection, spots a little diesel coming round the mountain. The diesel is Rusty, who has come to help on the Skarloey Railway and despite his friendliness, Rusty has little time to chat and regards Harold as being cheeky after he said "Well done, cheers and keep up the good work!" 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 was ill, he could not shunt trucks.

Sir Handel, tired of dealing with trucks, takes the hint from Gordon of feigning an illness, and does so the next day. With no time for examination on Sir Handel, Peter Sam and Rusty are allocated his trucks, but Peter Sam does not 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 (despite the empty trucks' warning) and break their metal chain coupling, zooming down the slope and colliding into Peter Sam. Rusty helps Peter Sam out of his mess, but the damage Peter Sam sustains cracks his funnel and dents his boiler.

After Sir Handel apologises about the accident, the Fat Controller punishes him for lying and for not warning Peter Sam about how much damage trucks can do, by making him do his and Peter Sam's work at the same time. Sir Handel then wishes to pay Gordon out.

After clearing away the wreckage, Rusty heads back home, where he spots Harold again. This time, Rusty mimics Harold from their previous meeting by uses his phrase, "Well done, cheers and keep up the good work!"




  • 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.
  • On the Thomas' Trackside Tunes and other Thomas Adventures VHS/DVD, PBS Kids Sprout airings and Season 4 (Digital Download), this episode is called "Trucks" instead of the American title.
  • 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 the coupling snaps in the US version, there is a springing sound. In the UK, the springing sound is omitted.


  • 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.
  • Before Peter Sam leaves the yard with his coaches and trucks, a small hair can be seen by his wheels.
  • Before Peter Sam is pulled out of the wreckage, his funnel is not cracked like it is later.
  • When the narrator says "Not long now had encouraged the driver," the top of Rusty's engine is offscreen when it should be in-front of the cylinder above Rusty's number, and thus should have been onscreen.
  • 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 and international versions, Gordon has Duck's whistle sound, Sir Handel has Rheneas' and Rheneas has Duke's.
  • When Peter Sam backs his coaches onto Sir Handel's trucks, his front coach has a face, but when he leaves his coaches at the station, it loses its face.

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 Troublesome Trucks
Czech Vagónky Wagons
Italian Carri! Trucks!
Welsh Tryciau Trucks
Dutch Goederenwagons Goods Wagons
Hungarian A haszontalan tehervagonok Useless Wagons
Chinese 货车厢 Freight Cars
Slovenian Tovorni vagoni Freight Wagons
Romanian Vagoane de Marfă Freight Cars
Slovak Vagóny! Wagons!
Swedish Godsvagnar Wagons
Russian Платформы! Platforms!
Ukrainian Платформи Platforms
Polish Wagony Wagons
Danish Busvogne Mobile Homes
Greek φορταμαξών Wagons
Thai รถบรรทุกก่อเรื่อง Truck Trouble

Home Media Releases


DVD Packs



DVD Boxsets


  • Rock 'n' Roll and other Stories
  • The Complete Fourth Series

DVD Packs




DVD Boxsets














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