Good advise for everyone; especially around these parts. Just say'n.
Most truckers are professionals. There are a few oddballs out there. When I pass a truck I do it as quickly as possible. Some people seem to be mesmerized by the left rear wheel of a trailer and just hang there.
Never drove an 18 wheeler in my life but driving my motor home and pulling a car I stretch out to almost the legal limit and find people starting to pass and then hanging alongside your towed car instead of getting the job done. Then many cut right in under your bumper when they do pass.
Overall I found the article good, but maybe a little too much slanted to the truckers point of view. Knowing these guys are working long hours and can be a little on the tired side, when you see one of those rigs weaving around it is a really good idea to distance yourself from them.
Used to drive for a living. Two things that are absolute. Don't hang beside them and never pass on the left. But pass and then cut them off and they will turn you and the family into jelly.
My mom's brother in law retired from trucking after 40 years without a ticket or being involved in any accident. I think he got a saftey award and a $20 Timex.
He said he always tried to look out for the cars because he drove one too.
I always thought the vehicle in my way could very well be my mother so I didn't get upset and just stayed away from them. The bad thing was the road ragers that would be mad because you were crawling up a hill at 40 MPH and when they got by would flip the bird and hit the brakes. I even saw people do the with their families in the car.
Things have really changed since I drove. The old days of toothpicks holding truckers eyes open are long gone. My drivers complained about the hours. Many truckers are wide awake in their sleepers when they have to do their mandatory shut down and then have to drive without a good rest. There is a need to make some more changes to let the driver use his time wisely and safely.
Dis, I had a buddy that hauled stuff from StL to Washington, picked up stuff to take to Ca and left the Valley with a load to take back to STL.
The only time he slept was while he was being loaded, 2-4 hours max.
When he got home he was holed up for two-three days sleeping.
Later I found out what kind of toothpicks he was using.
Those guys burned out early. As they fueled up they downed a cup of coffee and a piece of pie and were gone. I don't see how they made it. I liked my sleep time. Sometimes I wish I was still driving until I see one broke down on the side of the road or driving on Christmas day.
I try to respect the big trucks - what some of them lack in manners, they more than make up for in size.
Getting on around them is good advice - had an underwear-changing event in my former Honda CRX pre-air-bag roller skate while passing one casually - its tire decided to fail - Ka-Bloo-Ee. Between the rubber shrapnel, the truck swerving, and the startling noise - figured I was fixin' to end up like one of those cartoon characters after being run over by one of those road 'steam rollers'.
However, there is a minority out there that don't need to be. The ones who are playing 'follow-the-leader' in a long line of trucks, who then decide to pull out and pass just as I'm coming up on the line, and taking the next several miles to get on around. The ones pulling tandem trailers weaving on down the road, taking up more than one lane.
Fortunately, this minority is far outnumbered by the morons encountered in the four-wheeled variety of transportation. The ones who have no concept of 'yield' when merging, the ones who think drafting shouldn't be limited to NASCAR, the ones who can't maintain a given speed so that I am passing and being passed by the same vehicle several times over.
Fortunately, I have developed a three-step program that has worked out pretty well. Get mad, get over it, and just get there in one unscathed piece.
There are plenty of crazy truck drivers out there too. It is usually the young ones that haven't had their world rattled by an accident yet. Usually after a most truck drivers has been on the road for 5 years or so the will mellow out. Its kind of like NASCAR. You will behind another truck and gaining at 5 MPH and pull out from behind him and his slipstream bringing you down to about 1 MPH faster or even less.
A driver that is always wanting to pass will go nuts in no time. Its best just to follow the flow of traffic.
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