Well, My Rookie Mistake Finally Happened

Topic 25179 | Page 1

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Grumpy Old Man's Comment
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Everyone has drummed into my head to never trust GPS. People here, my trainer, CDL school instructors, etc. And I took it to heart. But, I need a GPS. Notes, etc., will not work because I need reading glasses, so notes are would need to be 3x5 FEET for me to be able to see them, and when it is dark, no size will work.

So, every trip I run on the GPS, then change it to match the company’s local directions if needed.

All good, right? Not so much.

I had to go to Lewiston, ME to drop a load of dog food, then to S Portland, ME to pick up a load of scrap cardboard for the return trip. Routed both perfectly.

I get to the Walmart DC, and for some reason, the GPS sent me the opposite way on the first road off the interstate. It wanted me to turn left onto a road that met the road I was on at a 30 degree angle. No amount of left buttonhook is going to get that done.

No big deal. Don’t panic. Pop the brakes and flashers and google satellite view my location. Found an industrial park around the corner I can turn around in, come back and make the turn easy. Everything is good now.

Now, I head to S Portland. I follow the GPS because it perfectly matched local directions. The only problem is, when I set it up I was coming from the south, just like the company directions. Luckily (or do I thought), I caught it and went to the same exit I would have used coming north.

All good, right? Again, not so much. GOS said you have arrived just as I made the last turn and realized it dropped me dead center of Portland (not even S Portland).

So again, don’t panic, pop the brakes and flashers and see if I can get myself out of this mess. Nope. Not without driving right through the center of town.

So how do I fix it?

I dial 411, get the local police, and explain the situation and ask for help. A very nice lady cop gave me an escort right through the center of town. I made some pretty hairy turns without hitting anything.

So, that was my big mistake so far. I hope it is the worst, since in the end, I handled it, and nothing was damaged it no one was hurt.


Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.


Commercial trade, business, movement of goods or money, or transportation from one state to another, regulated by the Federal Department Of Transportation (DOT).

Bobcat_Bob's Comment
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I call that a good learning experience, you felt like a fool and didnt hit anything or hurt anyone other than your pride.

Marc Lee's Comment
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Not sure what the mistake was.

Sounds like you handled it all like a pro!

Grumpy Old Man's Comment
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Not sure what the mistake was.

Sounds like you handled it all like a pro!

Thanks. The mistake was not checking the route yet again before heading out.

Marc Lee's Comment
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Not sure what the mistake was.

Sounds like you handled it all like a pro!


Thanks. The mistake was not checking the route yet again before heading out.

Ah... got it. Thanks.

Still... good recovery!

G-Town's Comment
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Yeah Grump, what Marc said; Great Recovery! And great judgement in calling for help.

Junkyard Dog's Comment
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Good idea to call the cops especially in those Northeast towns where things are old and tight. I was in the Boston suburbs and my GPS kept telling me I had low bridges and I was petrified of hitting one. Called the police explained the situation and the dispatcher told me I should get a professional GPS... I told him I had one... LOL. His tone changed immediately and told me the route to take. Haven't been back to the Northeast since and I'm thankful every every load I get that doesn't take me there


Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
PackRat's Comment
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Nice recovery. You handled that like a pro, stopping before it may have gotten worse. Great job!good-luck.gif

Grumpy Old Man's Comment
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Thanks guys. I sure didn’t feel like a pro.

The cop was awesome though.

PackRat's Comment
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Don’t worry. There will be many more days that you’ll feel like an idiot. Happens to everyone.

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