I’m going to play off a new blog friends idea here. Jess and Sunshine of Moma Trucks, recently posted an article on What they wish every driver knew. They are talking about all the four wheelers out there. There are many times I really wish people could see the tings we see. The worst of course is when you’re in the crush of traffic.
We don’t have cybernetic implants to recognize dangers around us… only our instincts, honed by experience. The electronic gizmos installed in our trucks by companies to help (
snitch and tattle tale) their drivers, simply don’t aid us all that much. It’s the drivers perceptions, reaction, and most important, experience that makes the difference. Sure there is all kinds of technologies out there designed to make us safer. Usually it is nothing more than an annoyance or nuisance developed by a person who has never been behind the wheel before. Actually, most of those gadgets are additional distractions we really don’t want or need.
The only advance warning we have of your driving actions, are the ones you give us. Use those turn signals, and not after you’ve already started that lane change… well before. Make sure your break lights are working, and pay attention to the surroundings. You know, get off that cell phone and look around before you merge into traffic on the freeway.
We do, at least the professional drivers do, practice safe habits to help us react to the actions of those around us. When you’re entering the freeway, try accelerating to the speed of traffic around you. I see you, trust me, I suspect exactly what your intentions are, and am prepared to slow or take evasive maneuvers if necessary. Don’t be afraid to step on that gas peddle. There isn’t a snake beside it, you won’t get bit.
Keep in mind, I’m driving something that most likely out weighs your vehicle by at least 50 to 1. Yes we have 10 sets of breaks, but that doesn’t mean we can stop on a dime. If I can change lanes to let you in, I will; please be courteous, return the favor and let me back in.
Everyone has heard about our blind spots, trust me they are very real and can hide a full size delivery truck. Don’t hang out beside us if you can help it. That makes me nervous because usually I can’t see you, I may know you’re there; but…
Okay, now here is a big one. If I turn on my signal indicating I need to change lanes, it’s because of something I can see that you probably can’t. Don’t race up preventing me from getting in front of you. This isn’t the old days when trucks were drastically slow to accelerate. I’m not going to hold you up that long, and will probably help you get through whatever snafu is ahead of us.
Now, once we get through all that wonderful city traffic, and find ourselves rolling down the open highway… Please pass quickly, don’t dawdle and take your time. I understand passing a big truck can be intimidating. Guess what, if you do it like you have a purpose, it will be over sooner. I find it very disconcerting when a person hangs out beside me. I slow down, inevitably they do also. Come on, Vroom, Vroom.
One last thing. You might be out to enjoy a relaxing weekend with friends and family. I know you want to get there and get on with your fun and entertainment. Just remember, I’m working, not on vacation. I have been out here for six weeks, and it doesn’t look like I’ll get home to see Jennifer for another two. My intention is not to slow you down or prevent you from having a good time. My intention is to deliver my freight, and hopefully pick up the load that will take me home to the waiting arms of my lovely Jennifer. Not to mention her fabulous Italian cooking! Please; cut ME some slack.
Alright, alright, I’ll get off the soapbox now, and wish you a wonderful weekend.