High Mileage Truck

Truck drivers see and experience many things while on the road.  Some of their stories are too funny to not share! Last week, we asked drivers to share some of their best stories and favorite memories from the road.  This is what they said…

Candice J.- One of my first years riding in the truck we made a delivery in Effingham, IL, and we had more product than was ordered. We had boxes of pork chops and boneless pork loins. We have always carried a grill, but money was tight and had no charcoal.

We started with a broke up pallet… got on the CB and hollered that we had free food. In no time at all, we had a group of great drivers stopping by.  Some brought charcoal, some brought drinks and plates. It was pretty early– 4 or 5 in the evening. We cooked till midnight, feeding lots of people.  Some hung out and some grabbed a to-go bite to eat.

There was one guy who heard me on the CB; he replied that he had already left and hated he missed it. A short time later, he pulled up and said he had to see it ’cause nothing was free. We made him a plate to go and a sandwich for right then. This guy really touched my heart when he said., “this is how it used to be. Drivers looking out for drivers… old school. The way it should be.”

Michael R. – Getting pulled into a Missouri weigh station at 3 am with another truck. Scale master was just bored. He checks the kids logbook and sends him on his way and turns to look at mine. Kid stops at the door and says,”I think I gave you the wrong logbook.” Scale master closed my logbook without looking at it and said you can go. I hit the door running.

Loren Z.- Was finishing up with the D.O.T officer after a inspection at the Hannibal, Missouri scale. They were training a new guy and he stopped a bull hauler and told him to pull to the side and bring in the usual stuff. This old cowboy pulls his brakes on the scale and walks in and asks the rookie what the problem is. The rookie says well you’re 1200 lbs over on your drive axles. This cowboy just looks at him and says,  “Look you dumb S.O.B. I just haul the damn things. I don’t tell them where to stand.”

He goes back to his truck and just drives away. The other officer and i just lost it.

Johnny F.- I was picking up a load and after they got me loaded, they told me, “You need to pull over there and tarp,” showing me an area that had a safety harness and cable.

I remember thinking that this was a GREAT idea, and even if I fell nothing could happen to me.  WRONG! I put on the harness, hooked myself to the cable and upon top of the load I went.

Now this was an unusual load as it was a high stack on the front of the trailer, a low stack in the middle and another high stack on the back. I sweated to death, almost, and got the tarps stretched all over the load evenly and decided to get off the truck and go cool off before putting the bungee chords on everything. I did not want to climb down off the high stack on the back, onto the middle low stack and back up onto the high front stack. Do you see where this is going?

So I think to myself, ” I have on a safety harness, so why not just jump the four feet over to the other side?”

So I got me a little running start and away I went.  As soon as I was airborne, the sensor on the pulley up above detected that I was moving at an unusual speed and it locked down on me.

My toes ALMOST touched my destination, and suddenly I was whiplashed and hanging like a pig in a slaughterhouse, out to the side of my truck I was propelled in the blink of an eye.

To make matters worse, the leg straps came up into my pelvic area at such a rapid speed that my shorts burst open in the front, my underwear ripped to one side and Mr. Hide-And-Seek and his neighbors popped out to have a look around.

I can’t pull my shirt down over anything as it is jammed into my moobs and armpits, and I cannot reach down to cover anything with my hands.

So there I sat spinning, and because of the pressure on my belly that was pushed up under my chin by now, I could look down and see everything I got for the first time in 10 years.

Each time I go in a full circle I can see the forklift operator about 300 feet away loading a truck and, he cannot hear me yelling.

Fortunately an old black man– I did not get his name; you will see why not later– DID see what happened and he jumped out of his truck to come help me.

He asked if I was OK, and as I spun slowly facing and flashing him, he said “White Boy, you is in a bad way.”

He is looking around for a release switch to let me down, but there is not one. I am thinking the entire time that at least he is the only person who saw this

WRONG again.

Out from the side, I hear the office people coming asking if I need an ambulance, and he is telling them to just stay back, and I yelled that I was not injured in any way.

The old man said there was only one way to get the pressure off the cable so it would release, and he got up under me and put a leg over each shoulder of his pushed up on me as I TEABAGGED his neck and shoulders and sure enough it let off and down we went slowly.

He came out from under me and walked away very rapidly to his truck and never looked back.

I regained my composure, got up into my truck and put on new shorts etc, and got back out. As I looked towards the offices, I noticed there were NO windows for the people inside to see what happened to me, and I remember wondering if I was actually screaming that loud for them to hear me a block away in the air conditioning.

I went to talk to the poor old guy that rescued me and asked if I could buy him dinner. He said “No sir, we already had our first AND last date and I am getting the hell out of here before anybody remembers my face.” 

I finished putting straps on the load, drank a glass of tea from my cooler, and proceeded to the offices to get my paperwork.  NOBODY inside would make eye contact with me except for the guy filling out the forms for my bills.

As I stood there looking around, lo and behold, there on the wall was a color monitor of surveillance with a close up view of my truck and the area where I had been hanging out.  I just hung my head in shame, and the guy asked me if I was sure that I was not injured, and I told him I would be perfectly fine. Just a few burn marks from the seatbelt material on the safety harness.

He passed the paperwork to me under the glass, smiled and said, ” OK, Peter Pan, if you will sign right here we will have you on your way.”

Every staff member started snorting and blowing snot bubbles laughing at that point and so did I.  I asked if they had recorded my incident and he said he was in the process of erasing it as we speak, and that he would have used it as a safety training video had I not made it X-rated.

Eddie F.- I was forced to sell my own truck after a lot of expensive repairs and went the route of company driver. I drove for a month or so and survived on truck stop points. Last year I had met another driver and he gave me a book “Prison To Praise.” He said to read thru it and call him. I called him and kinda told him of some of the troubles.

He then told me to write out a ComCheck for $125 to give me some cash to operate. What I didn’t tell him was that I only had .27 in my pocket.

I made that gift last for a month and now the finances are finally straightening out. This gift from a driver I only met briefly helped me thru a very rough time. Miracles do happen. God Is Good!!

John B.- Watching a driver argue with a DOT officer in Limon, CO saying “No, I’m not going to fix my log book.  It’s perfectly fine and legal.”  The officer looking at him and says, “Sir, your log shows you left Charlotte, NC at 6am this morning it is now 4pm in Limon, CO. If I go outside, that truck better have 2 wings and after burners.” Never laughed so hard in my life.

Anna B.- My favorite story is my hubby drives for hours, days, and is gone for weeks at a time to provide for his family. Best part of this story is when he gets to come home for that one to maybe two days and see his kids that have grown-up, and two off them now adults, and his now two-year-old grand baby. God Bless all truckers!!!

Bill B.-  A company I worked for when I started forced you to team with another rookie. I got teamed with a 67-year-old women who couldn’t back and was afraid to drive in the dark. New Year’s Eve day, I’m out of hours, so I force her to drive. She hooks to the trailer and takes off, and she never checked the pin, so the trailer fell and broke the electric line. After a few hours, we get going again I go back to bed, only to be woke up by the LAPD, because she ran over a gas pump island and hit the low canopy at a gas station. Another couple hours go by, its almost day light now, we get going again (she’s still driving). I wake up ready to drive, and we are parked. I got out of the truck and she’s crying saying, I thought if I went this way we could make up some time. I ask where are we? 3 miles OFF the road in the desert. It took awhile but I got us out in 1st gear all the way. She was fired shortly after that.

Jim C.- Ohio Turnpike– I  see a car on the side of the road, so I move over to give them room. As I pass, I notice an elderly couple outside the car. He is bent over with his pants around his ankles and she is using whatever she could find in the car to clean up the mess, if you know what I mean! Apparently that next service plaza wasn’t close enough.

That, my friends, is true love right there!

Guy N.- In 1985, I was going down 95 southbound in South Carolina. There was a police chase. Myself and another trucker heard it on CB. We blocked the road and stopped the chase. The police caught the driver of the car. Police thanked us for helping to catch and stop the car before he had an accident or killed anyone. That my favorite memory, and I’m still driving today after 34 years on the road.

Randy F.- Best memory was, as a young ‘un, growing up on my family’s dairy farm. Dad bought a load of fertilzer (really? I thought I had pitched plenty of it out of the calf pens!) Anyway, the load was delivered by a big trucker pulling a hopper bottom. He was a nice guy who took the time to visit with me while the ferilizer was being augered off the trailer. I think his handle was “Tar Wheels,” or something like that. I had a hand held walkie talkie that could listen in on one of the cb channels. As he was leaving the farm, he was talking to me on the walkie talkie. I thought that was about the coolest thing ever! Of course, he was out of range in no time at all, but for a minute or two, I was on top of the world!

Michael B.-  30 years doing this, and I have quite a few, but i’ll just tell you about this morning, Friday 9-5-14.

I parked in a rest area 8 miles from my delivery and 25 miles from my terminal. Blind side into a cab-aire parking spot. I don’t really use these yet (a little leary of pumping bacteria into my cab),  But I thought I would look into it. It’s not one of manned sites; it’s a do-it -yourselfer. So I walk to the kiosk, and the directions say to purchase the kit in the market inside the building. So I walk about 1/4 mi inside.

On my way in, I’m noticing how much bus parking is out front. Enough for 17 (on each side of the bldg), and I got the last truck spot available. What rest stop is capable of handling 12 or 1300 people? I go inside and all the catering is closed except BK. What, no maket to buy a kit?  I mean its a no-idle state and very muggy out. Oh well. Back to the truck for sleep.

This morning I get up to the flatbed next to me dragging chains from his headache rack across the parking lot so another driver who was willing to drag a third guys truck that wouldn’t start.

The RV on the other side has a car visitor (looked suspicious), and on walk inside yet another truck is being jumpstarted, and the Dot is sitting up front.

Inside now there are restrooms for NB and SB. Well one direction was closed just like last night. I pay for my $5.45 cup of Starbucks burnt coffee,  just in time, as I’m walking out, a busload is walking in.

I got a chuckle because the DOT was right on that driver as soon as the bus was empty, so much for his 1/2 hour mandatory break.

As i type this, there are now 3 DOT and 7 busses, watched 4 inspections. Wait 7 busses, that’s like 350 people in a rest area. Oh, according to to parking they can handle 1300 remember.  

My break is almost up now, and I wonder what this day will bring my way.

My favorite trucking story, just waking up each day.

Karl A B.- I was in Beloit at the Love’s– I went in to shower and had parked next to a swifty. Needless to saym I come back from my shower ready to roll and I get to my truck. Halfway down my tank, I see a wallet and swifty is now gone. I pick it up and look in it a few bucks in cash and a whole bunch of cards so, I look and sure enough it’s a Swift fuel card, so being a former swifty, (everyone has to push that proverbial broom) I had the number still and called and asked if they could tell me where his truck is, to which they replied no and I had said, well I have his wallet with fuel card and everything so he won’t get far which changed their tune a bit. Needless to say, they messaged him and he called me, and lucky for him, we were going the same general direction, so I told him find a place to stop and I’ll meet you.

I met up with him, which saved him doubling back an hour and blowing 2 more hours of his day. So driver and wallet were reunited. He was ever grateful and gave me all his cash, even though I refused it like 7 times.  I decided to pay it forward and took that money ordered a pizza in the ghetto part of Grand Rapids and gave it as the tip to this girl that delivered, and it was her first night and kinda nervous, so I had hoped that made her night as it was like $10.

Dennis A.- I worked at a company that has brown trucks– not saying the name. My trainer and I got in a big fight because I told him he was wrong. We were in Minnesota, got a run to Florida, and it pays 2,000 miles. He said that  was wrong. It should be 200 miles. No lie He said Florida was the next state over from Minnesota.  I pulled out my atlas and showed him a map of the USA. He said I need to get my money back because it was printed wrong. My dispatcher told me to put up with him because he was probably right.

Seth W.-  I was at the TA in Nashville one fall night and after my shower and dinner, I was sitting in my truck with the windows down jaw jacking with my best friend on the phone. It was a beautiful night. Temps in the upper 50’s and a slight breeze. The lot lizards had been working hard when one approached. I said, “Hold on, cuz.” She looked up and asked, “Would you like some company?”  I said,” No ma’am, but if I did, how much does company cost?” She said, “Well that depends on what kinda company you’d like!” I said, “I’d want the finest company that money could buy.”  She said, “Well that’s a hundred dollars.” I said, “A HUNDRED DOLLARS?!? With all do respect, ma’am, I’ve seen you climb in and out of 5 different trucks over the last 45 mins and you’re gonna try and sell me a used car for new car prices?” All the while my best friend is on the other end listening screaming,” OH NO You DIDNT!!!??? “She looked at me in bewilderment and said, “So did you want some company?” And I said, “No, ma’am.” And she faded off into the night……or another truck.

Drew E.- The month I took my daughter with me. June 2013. We hit hurricane Andrea in Florida. We almost hit a twister in Nebraska. And lightning almost hit us in Ohio. It was right in front of us. While sky lit up gold with the bolt pure white right in the middle. Made a loud pop (like when you arc a battery cable) and instantly the crack of thunder. She had the most fun that whole month. We hit 24 of the 48. I’ll never forget that month.

Lee P.- Remember going up to Minneapolis following the Mississippi River in a big object was falling from the sky. They landed 20 feet in front of my truck.  It was a huge fish. An eagle must of dropped it from the sky.

Steven T.- Oh back some 25 or 26 years ago, I got the itch to hit the road. Having run Chicago local and did a bunch of spotting, figured I knew this sh-tuff. First trip – left a 200 foot skid mark leading up to a posted 12’8″ bridge on US 20 in NY. Radio lit up calling me everything but a good Christian, eventually found out that was the height at the low end of the arch.

Now I know why drivers hit bridges in Chicago. No uniform way of measuring.

Sabine S.- Over 10 years ago in Chicago, we were going towards Wisconsin, traveling with the traffic. Up ahead is a J.R. Schugel truck. All of a sudden 1/3 of his trailer roof comes flying at us. We dodge as much as possible to avoid it, but it hits our grill and left side and then the car on our righr. It was about 18 foot of trailer roof. J. R. is completely oblivious and keeps on trucking. No CB on either. So we start chasing him. Our truck was not governed, thank God. So a few mins later, we catch up, honking at him, trying to get him to pull over. He finally did, couldn’t believe he did that. The kicker, he hit a low bridge earlier that day. Did not report it. Strapped the roof down per his dispatch and headed home.

Sabrina P. – My favorite memory is I used to ride with my dad when I was a little girl. He hauled fish from Miami, FL to New York City’s Fulton Fish Market near Pier 17. He was well known there, so when I would go they would look out for me. I remember walking by myself at 11-12 to a bakery around the corner. Well my mom found out and was furious. I guess back then the teamsters ran the market my dad would say, “Cindy nothing is gonna happen to her she was being followed.” Needless to say that never happened again. I have lots of memories, but that is my favorite.

Francisco S.- Me and the old co-driver were on the I-8, heading out of Yuma, heading home. We’re hauling fresh picked lettuce, a produce load. Well, DOT decides to set up a temporary checkpoint. My co-driver at the time wakes me up to let me know, I said, “Play it cool.” We get to the officers, one on driver side and the other with a dog on the passenger side. The officer says, “What’s in the box!?” I swear, I laugh about this now, but then it was not funny. My co-driver says, “Reefer.” Sure enough, I can swear that dog understood him, drag his trainer to the rear of the trailer. We were out of the truck instantly in cuffs. They searched everything, every nook, all our stuff, us. It was an experience, that’s for sure.

Erik C.- Driving on the freeway, a rainbow was at my trailer bulster and arching off into the east.  I call my freind he said You’ll never see that again. Low and behold, it was right back.  It would make an awesome picture.

Ryan H.-  About 3:00 am, in GA somewhere around the 275 or 475. Get on the off-ramp. There standing in confidence, on the shoulder of the road, was a ostrich. I’m not kidding.  It flapped its big wings at me. Crazy! I still laugh about this all the time. Like, did that just happen? Did I just see that? Haha.

Kevin K.- My first trip ever, I accidentally stalled the truck. I didn’t know that I had to turn the key off and back on for the air starter to work. Lost all my air pressure in one shot. Stuck on the side of the road at midnight, knocking on doors so I could make a phone call for help.

Peggi M.- Dang Turkey Buzzard! I had just finished driving school, and was taking a load out west, and my company had me routed on a country goat road for some reason. I was driving, along trying to make sure I kept the truck out of the ditch, and 2 turkey buzzards were having lunch on a critter right in my lane. Slowing down to give them time to get out of my way didnt work. One of them flew up and caught his neck on my drivers’ side mirror and just hung there, so here I am on a road with no place to pull over with this ugly ass huge bird flappin his wings in the wind, starring at me. 4 wheelers honkin and pointing as they go by.

Umm like I dont know this thing is hanging there, scaring me to death wings still flapping. I finally, 30 miles later, found a place to pull over and as it dropped off my mirror, realized it was the wind that was making his wings flap. If I would of slowed down right away, I would have known it died on impact. I got to the truck stop up the road and everyone was on the cb with jokes like, nice hood ornament, lady, you must be from oklahoma… saving that for supper?

Josh M.- When I was with a trainer, and he started out driving for the day and pulled off to the side of the highway we were on.  I tok over; I’m drowsy and just waking up.  He’s still sitting up front with me, and we pass a sign that says I 666.  I look over at my trainer and after a moment of quite contemplation I ask him, “Am I still dreaming, or are we in hell..?” Than proceeded to joke about how I knew hell would be a long desolate highway, where you just keep driving forever and can’t find a rest stop.. Lol

Russell L. – We were driving from I-35, west to U.S. 287 using small state roads, we came to a town called Nacona, TX. We were on the main street, and at the far end of the street, we saw a police car with its lights on  make a right and come towards us at a very slow speed.  About 5 seconds later, a marching band, then floats. We were driving right into a parade. No closure signs on the road, and the side streets were narrow and filled with cars. We were able to make a right less than a block from the lead cop car. I am amazed we didn’t see it on the local news that night. Headline: Crazed Trucker Tries to Crash City Celebration.

Gina L.-  Stopped at the top of Cabbage, checked my brakes. Rolled out of the check station, watching my speed for my weight. Just coming around the 2nd turn, this car, flying past me, swerves back in front of me slamming on the brakes. I hit my brakes to keep from running over him. As we had no jake brakes, I was tapping the brakes to keep the speed down. When I got to the last curve, I passed a Swift, and told hubby, I was going to let her go on the hill. Sitting in the middle at the bottom was OR state cop. I flew past him, got off the exit, and headed to the Arrowhead truckstop. My brakes were smoking pretty good. Just parked the truck, and sat and watched the cop coming down the hill after me. When he got to me told of how he could take me to jail for reckless driving, etc etc. I told him about the brakes smoking, and no where to pull over. Needless to say, I never went to jail, never got a ticket. Lucky—yes. It was night, and I was smart enough to pull into truckstop. Oh yeah, he clocked me running 87 mph!

Grant B.- That day going down Vail with a 45,000 lb steel coil on flatbed, and when you think it’s in gear, Jakes on. Then it pops out of gear, and all could do was stab break hard, and that smell of smoked brakes. Luckily, I got down enough to get ‘er in a gear, then got ‘er stopped and poured all my water on tires.

Keith Wilson Well, I was towed up to the top of Aspen ski mountain in January by a snowcat in a bobtail to suck out septic tank at resort restaurant. Going up was cool, but coming down the face of one of the world’s most exclusive ski mountains  in a tanker with me in front and snowcat holding me from behind was terrifying. Actually was on news for that one.

John R.- I was working for a small company. I took my nephew and my dog with me on a trip. We left Phoenix and headed down to Florida. Then ran the east coast. After about 3 weeks, pulled into the house. He was happy to be home so was I. He had a blast and still talks about me letting him drive. (He sat on my lap).

Jason P.- Not sure if it’s a favorite memory, but certainly memorable! My first winter driving, I had a delivery on a dirt road out in the woods. Of course the road was all hard packed, but at least sanded. Got there, made my delivery. Now to get turned around. I knew of a place about 1/2 mile further up that I can get turned around, however, it was all uphill. Get to the hill and watched the sand drift off into a driveway….not good. Used my momentum and got about 2/3 the way up the icy hill, then to a dead stop. Being the greenhorn I was, I tried to back down said hill. Lost traction. Almost put the trailer in one ditch, then the tractor in the other at least 3 times.

Made to the bottom of hill (without soiled pants, thankfully) then had to back 3 miles out the main road. Never made that mistake again!!

Luis M.-  A cop in Washington state told me he stop a trucker going 95 mph where the maximum speed for trucks is 60, and when the cop was walking to the truck, he noticed the truck driver was throwing donuts out from the window. The cop said what are you doing, and the truck driver say feeding the bear the cop was laughing and said get out of here.

Michael M.- I-95 in Florida was shut down due to wildfires and smoke, and the traffic was backed up, squeezing into one lane to exit. I was about 1/4 mile from the exit and several idiots passed me on the shoulder, so I pulled my rig onto the shoulder to shut it off. Then five more idiots dropped down into the grass to get around me. There were three state troopers at the exit, watching. They pulled all five idiots over.

Teresa L.-  We were driving in Illinois on 39 north. I was sleeping in the back when I felt us stop. I got up, got dressed, and went inside the rest area. I yelled to my team partner “Di I’m in here” to no response. Went ahead and went to the bathroom thinking she didn’t want to answer with other people in there. Walked out to see my truck driving away without me! I took off running and screaming, and she never saw me. I ran up to another driver sitting in his truck screaming did he have a phone (I left my phone and smokes in the truck). He asked me did she leave me ON PURPOSE. I was like not if she knows what’s good for her. She normally doesn’t answer numbers she doesn’t know but did and thank God she did. Otherwise she would’ve kept on driving to WI and THEN realized I wasn’t there. Our friends had a hay day with this story and for weeks I had RUN FORREST on my Facebook. Grr assholes. Lol.

 

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