Too Windy To Drive?

Topic 22503 | Page 1

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Villain's Comment
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"Like many things you tend to get a feel for the wind and when common sense kicks-in signaling to shut down. A sustained wind speed of 35-40 with significantly higher gusts is where I get concerned and reduce my speed accordingly and if need be, park".

That's a quote from G-Town in a post about high winds. Im on I40 at the weigh station just West of OKC. I parked because as I was driving the cross wind had the end of my trailer on the white boundary line even though the truck was centered in the lane. I am empty. There is a high wind advisory and the truck is rocking as I write this. So why am I questioning if I should be stopped? Because I have 5 weeks of experience and I don't yet have a feel for the wind. I don't want to be unsafe but at the same time I don't want to jump at any little thing that goes boo in the dark. Is running empty that much more easy to blow over?

Bran009's Comment
member avatar

Well I'm newer than you, but I've always seen that if you don't feel safe don't drive

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

If there is a posted wind advisory, there a very high probability there is an implied or formal empty trailer ban.

No question, you did the right thing. Maintain communication with your driver management and stay informed on the weather reports.

Diver Driver's Comment
member avatar

You did the right thing by shutting down. No one can tell you when "it's safe to drive."

Say the wind was 5mph less, and there were no warnings. If your trailer is all over the place, is it really safe to drive ?

If your fighting the wheel, and find yourself white knuckling ther steering wheel, do you think your being safe ? At that point you are most likely driving beyond your personal limits, and are also distracted. It is a solid base for an incident / accident.

Not everyone has the same level confidence. A person from Florida, who's never seen, much less driven in snow, is not gonna have the same level of confidence as person who grew up in the rockies, driving in the snow since he could reach the pedals. That's why dispatch and safety won't come back to you with "but truck #1234 is rolling, why aren't you?"

It goes without saying that being empty, you're more susceptible to the wind vs. A fully loaded trailer.

Relax, enjoy the break, and keep dispatch updated.

Cwc's Comment
member avatar

And remember.. empty is less than twenty thousand pounds when it comes to wind.

As others have mentioned.. drive by the pucker factor. If your puckered up... park it.

Big Scott (CFI Driver and's Comment
member avatar

Just remember, you are the captain of your ship. If you don't feel safe, shut down. You did the right thing.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

If you don't feel safe to continue to drive in any adverse conditions, park it until the weather improves. Nobody wants special recognition for putting a truck and trailer on its side because the driver thought he could make it.

Nolaman's Comment
member avatar

The wind is never a problem... if you believe that, you're a fool. The wind and black ice are my biggest fears, especially the wind...as anyone who knows me knows. You can't see it coming. I'm getting better about the wind, but the moment I feel unsafe, I shut it down. End of. No load is worth flipping over for. You'll pay a serious price for not using common sense.

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

I'm not too far from you, shut down for the night on I40 near Amarillo. I was getting blown around a bit today too. Only I'm pulling a low-profile stepdeck fully loaded with 46k of onions. So I imagine it was pretty windy for an empty van. Be safe first. The rest will sort itself out.

Stepdeck:

A stepdeck , also referred to as "dropdeck", is a type of flatbed trailer that has one built in step to the deck to provide the capabilities of loading higher dimensional freight on the lower deck.

Dave Reid's Comment
member avatar

Villain, if your trailer is getting blown around alot and you don't feel safe, of coure you should stop. An empty van is a nightmare in the wind.

What's mighty problematic is that in a lot of areas in the west the wind seldom stops.

The lighter we are the bigger the problem. If you have 45,000 in the box you are probably pretty safe unless a tornedo or something like it hits you, then all bets are off.

At mid to heavy weight, if getting blown around, try slowing to Prime speed and see if that solves the problem. Seriously, try slowing to 55.

At empty to light weight, try putting the tandems all the way back, slow to 45 (flashers on), and try that. I recently got stuck driving a couple hundred miles empty in Wyoming. That was awful. Of course it was very windy - it is almost always real windy in Wyoming - so I slid 'em all the way back and drove that stretch at 45...made it to my pickup no problem. The hotdogs that think they can steam along at 70mph light in 40-50 mph are the ones you see in the ditch.

"Like many things you tend to get a feel for the wind and when common sense kicks-in signaling to shut down. A sustained wind speed of 35-40 with significantly higher gusts is where I get concerned and reduce my speed accordingly and if need be, park".

That's a quote from G-Town in a post about high winds. Im on I40 at the weigh station just West of OKC. I parked because as I was driving the cross wind had the end of my trailer on the white boundary line even though the truck was centered in the lane. I am empty. There is a high wind advisory and the truck is rocking as I write this. So why am I questioning if I should be stopped? Because I have 5 weeks of experience and I don't yet have a feel for the wind. I don't want to be unsafe but at the same time I don't want to jump at any little thing that goes boo in the dark. Is running empty that much more easy to blow over?

Tandems:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

Tandem:

Tandem Axles

A set of axles spaced close together, legally defined as more than 40 and less than 96 inches apart by the USDOT. Drivers tend to refer to the tandem axles on their trailer as just "tandems". You might hear a driver say, "I'm 400 pounds overweight on my tandems", referring to his trailer tandems, not his tractor tandems. Tractor tandems are generally just referred to as "drives" which is short for "drive axles".

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

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