The heroes of the highway are back as they fight to keep some of the most economically important, travelled, and inhospitable trucking routes in North America open during Season 5 of Highway Thru Hell. A Top 3 series on Discovery and Top 10 series on all of entertainment specialty television in Canada last season, the original Canadian hit series returned for its milestone fifth edition, and airs on Tuesdays at 10pm on Discovery.
Executive producer Mark Miller gave CraveOnline readers a glimpse into producing this exciting and often dangerous series.
CraveOnline: – Tell us about the new season of Highway Thru Hell.
Mark Miller: It is an incredible ride. This year Jamie Davis has to make some hard decisions. The downturn in Alberta means the operation needs to downsize. No one likes to sell trucks or lay off staff, and it is a really difficult thing for Jamie to do. In the first episode he says goodbye to his favourite truck: his prized Rotator. This season is about getting back to basics – keeping the roads safe at home and figuring out how to do a bigger job with less.
What are some of the challenges of filming a show like this that viewers may not realize?
Rain and snow, often at the same time, makes it very very difficult to film this show. Equipment fails regularly. It is just hard on gear and people. Our staff works like a fire department… they need to be ready to go anytime, day or night. Often our crews are out of contact for days at a time, working in remote locations. It requires a team who is self-reliant and resilient.
Why do you think people are so intrigued by this show and the topic matter?
A lot of people think the wrecks are the draw for this show. But, both Jamie and I believe the big attraction that keeps people tuning in week after week is the struggle to run a family and business. We all can relate to that. Jamie and his team are very genuine people, and I think we can all see a little bit of our own lives in the show.
What’s something you’ve learned about this industry that you didn’t know prior to working on the show?
Great question. I have learned that recovery operators are amazing people. They are part engineer, part soldier, part selfless hero. This is a complex business with some of the most sophisticated gear anywhere. I think most people didn’t understand towing until they watched our show.
Highway Thru Hell Season 5 airs Tuesdays at 10pm on Discovery.