Sunday, February 27, 2011

The trucker's test of patience

I'm only 2 weeks into my training and I'm convinced that there are many things of interest that I have yet to experience. However, there seem to be some reoccurring themes in the trucking life that I am sure I wil l have to deal with for the duration of my career on the highway.

Allow me to walk you through an oft repeated scenario, consider yourself behind the wheel for the following event.

You're chugging down the 4 lane trying to be mindful of safety and legal speed limits as well productivity and deadlines. While maintaining a safe and sane rate of speed, you find yourself gaining on a small car in the distance. As you approach the car you can see that the driver is driving with one hand on the wheel and is constantly looking down and to the right. A check of your speedometer indicates that this road bozo is traveling at about 52mph in a 55 zone. Once again, mindful of what you must accomplish in an allotted time frame, you move over to the left hand lane to pass the bozo.Once you get alongside this distracted driver, he suddenly decides to speed up slightly and match your speed. Now, bearing in mind that it is illegal for a commercial vehicle to travel in the left hand lane (except when passing), you decide to push legal boundaries and bump it up to 58mph in order to safely make it past your new nemesis. Yes, of course, bozo speeds up too. On the side of your truck is a large sign at eye level to bozo's car that reads "YOU ARE DRIVING IN MY BLIND SPOT". Bozo must not have graduated 1st grade because he takes the next 5 miles to study this sign in very close proximity. About this time, he gets another call/text on his phone and goes back to being distracted and slows down to 52mph. Finally, you get past him and are able to move into the right hand lane. As soon as you reach the right hand lane, you also reach the base of a hill. As you succumb to the forces of gravity that place an undo and unfair burden on 80K lbs, the bozo in the little car passes you. Being a small hill, you quickly negotiate the ascent and descent and find level ground on the other side. About this time, you once again find yourself quickly approaching the same bozo that you just took 5 miles to pass on the other side of the hill. Now, go back to the beginning of this paragraph and read it again, 5 times!

So, I guess I'm learning patience. But, I've always said "patience is for people that don't have something important to do".



  1. Wouldn't it be nice if it were a requirement for every driver to spend a day riding shotgun in an 18 wheeler prior to getting a driver's license? Motor home drivers experience some of the same although on a MUCH smaller scale. Drive carfeul and be safe out there.

  2. LOL, but I feel a bit guilty laughing. Truly, I feel your pain. However, you haven't made me feel a bit more compassionate towards the truckers on our I-5 corridor who pull out of the right lane into the fast lane just as you're coming up to them because they want to pass a truck doing 55mph.

  3. Good post. I always try to respect truckers. They are so much bigger than I am.

  4. Red,

    You never get to appriciate the morons on the road until you get behind the wheel of something rather large. My 36ft RV is short compared to a big rig but it does weigh 26,000lbs and takes up a large part of the lane.

    I get this happening to me too, all the time! When I drive my car I'm very mindful of truckers and you'd think most people would be, but they aren't.

    Good luck with the training period and if you ever see a blue and white RV that says Endeavor give a toot on the horns!


  5. Now I understand why some truckers try to go a little faster than others. I'm glad you still have patience. I would probably creep up on his bumper then lay into the horn. I want to know if little cars can jump? LOL