By Rachel Wulff

DONNER PASS (CBS13) — Those trying to get over Donner Pass were met with chain controls Wednesday morning. Most people we met were prepared or were ready to pay someone who was.

“It’s a little tangled,” said Caleb Joaquim.

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He tried to keep his sense of humor.

“This is how not to do it,” he joked.

He installed chains on his pickup along I-80 for only the second time in his life.

“The first time it was for mud,” Joaquim said.

Cars without four-wheel drive were required to put on chains along with big rigs. If not, they could face hefty fines. Officials say a tractor-trailer caught without chains could owe $1,200.

“I am a new driver-it’s my first time,” said one man in his twenties.

He was trying to figure it out while others had a little more tread on their tires when it came to installation. Chris Lotito has 43 years of experience installing chains.

“It’s just another day in the office,” he said. “Snow is always good for us up in the mountains — it’s our livelihood.”

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He says 80 percent of the people have chains and they are the right size, which makes his job easier.

It also makes it easier for truckers. Robert Allen watched YouTube videos to perfect his technique.

“Even so, it took me about five shows to watch it and about 40 minutes to chain up. It’s a job and each chain weighs 30-40 pounds and you gotta put six on,” he said.

He says paying someone to do it is worth the money. And so is pulling over sometimes.

“Just wait it out, but some people aren’t lucky enough to have food, refrigerator, anything like that in their truck,” Allen said.

One guy coming down the mountain wasn’t so lucky.

“It was driving fine and it started banging and I had to pull over,” he said.

So sometimes even the professionals don’t get it right. One of the chains came off, damaging his car.

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“Oh, man. I’m just trying to take them off now. Kind of a mess,” he siad.