11th November 2018. Lest we Forget. Farms and rain and Trucking.

Goodaye all.  To all who do recognise and remember, “Lest we Forget” today.

Sorry for missing you last week, too much work and too little time. A farm delivery Saturday afternoon and just in time, as the rain came down less than an hour back down the road and I should have been able to get in and out on the hard road, but the forklift would not have copped at all. That meant I got home 10PM Saturday night, slept in the truck and was to be loaded the next morning while on my break, but someone needed a key to get the freight and so a bit more time lost. Then back on the road at 10PM that night headed for Toowoomba.

Unload etc then have my break, thanks to ICEPACK, it was a much enjoyed sleep. In to Brisbane and load for Goondiwindi, reload a bit and home to Dubbo, then load for Melbourne. I do understand timeslots for DCs (distribution centres) but I fail to see how a timeslot booked three days in advance when so many things can change (and mostly things well out of my control) really fits with Chain of Responsibility, let alone getting there and then sitting for 3 to 4 hours.

I believe a driver should be able to contact the DC and have some flexibility available to them. Some are good and others seem to think they rule the world and particularly, yours. If you are only given a 15 minute window early and after 30 minutes late, are told to “Rebook and come back another day”, then after 45 minutes, they should be paying demurrage and I bet we would not be sitting there for three hours plus then.

The USA was due to try and get a law in that anytime over an hour at a DC would incur demurrage charges and this should be brought in here. I am still watching the USA to see if and when it might get up. Of course no one else cares about our time being wasted, do they?

My mate Yogi got a fine for a camera offense and it is one of the things the TRUCK THAT Australia Drivers Club put up for review. Please explain how a fine previously deemed to be an attempt to avoid Safe-t-cam by moving to the side of the road, can still take your photo and issue said fine? Crossing the left hand line or fog line is of no safety issue to anyone and if they can still take your photo, how can they justify $1400 plus 4 demerit points?

I was coming out of Melbourne Thursday afternoon, grossing over 66 tonne and displaying Bulk Dangerous goods signs and this goose in a ute could not wait behind me to take the next exit, he came up beside me and nearly pushed the car in front, so he could move into a non-existent gap between us to get off at the exit at the last second. I lit him up and gave him the horn and he of course was so sorry for making such a stupid and dangerous driving error, he gave me the finger and it seemed, screamed abuse at me. Sorry for not allowing you to be stupid in a safe way.

This happens on a regular basis, people seem to think the truck should do all and anything to allow them to do what and when they want. Do they realise it is not just a car they expect us to fling about and speed up or slow down for them, so they can risk both our lives not quite as badly? How many of you were taught about trucks when you got your license and have you been taught by anyone since?

I would welcome your views on two questions.
1. Do you believe we now teach people just to pass the driving test, let alone survive on the road for the next 50 years?
2. Were you given any instruction, guidance or knowledge about sharing the road with trucks when you did your learners?
Off to Melbourne now and I look forward to your replies. Safe Travelling, Rod Hannifey.

2 thoughts on “11th November 2018. Lest we Forget. Farms and rain and Trucking.

  1. Hi Rod,
    I believe the amount of attention being put on road etiquette has to suggest everyone needs to step back a bit and question their motives for their own behaviour.
    I was taught to drive by a truck driver, and although I learned to be courteous to other road users I have been guilty of being a n aggressive driver. I think we should all be held responsible for our behaviour and just because people are taught to drive properly does not mean their attitude will be appropriate for the other drivers around them.
    Whether we are traveling at 50 or 110kph , the key to safer roads lies with individuals attitude to everyone around them, and until we address that issue I think moving forward will be difficult to impossible.
    Cheers, Steve

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  2. Goodaye Steve, thanks for your comment. I agree that individuals attitude will often control their actions, but if they are trained better, then we must have better drivers overall. With the majority of car/truck fatals being the fault of the car driver, my concern is we are not teaching car drivers to share the road with trucks and therefore, they make mistakes or take risks without considering a trucks weight etc and then someone dies and you must agree, it is the far too late. Education is not everything and won’t overcome bad attitude, but education will help, I believe. Cheers Rod.

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