Sometimes You Face Difficult Driving Challenges In Trucking

by Rhonda
  • Blogs By Author

  • Blogs By Tag

What a change from last night! Sometimes you have these days and nights of skill testing if you drive a semi. I did not have a leisurely drive to Fort Smith as I normally do. I couldn't just relax, enjoy the drive, and drink my coffee. This was not meant to be. I had to work to stay safe and keep others safe too on this trip.

Battling For Position With A Tractor Trailer

There was bumper to bumper traffic in town and for the next hour while driving to my destination. Traffic racing to get around you before the right lane ends due to merging. Naturally these vehicles are ¼ mile behind you as you look in your mirrors to keep an eye on them. You have to. I am just a couple blocks from that lane that ends and there is no way they can get there before me, but they try. Here they come, only to find out they have to slam on their brakes and get in the line BEHIND me and they should have just stayed put instead of trying to get ahead of a big truck. I dealt with "Let's change lanes and cut off the semi before it can pass" game. Many who passed me swerved in front of me so close that I had to hit my brakes to avoid hitting them. And some also slowed down once they got in front of me. Guess you just have to be in front of the big truck and then slow me down so I can't maintain my speed.

I was already on the interstate and the lead vehicle trying to merge from the ramp saw me coming. Even though I was ahead of him and I knew I would be at the end of the ramp entrance to the interstate before him, he sped up to beat me to that point. He found out it was not going to work in this bumper to bumper traffic. There was plenty of room for him to have merged behind me instead of trying to get ahead of me. So, I reach the point of the merging as planned, ahead of the lead vehicle. I can see him in my mirrors and brace myself for an accident. This vehicle is determined to still get on the interstate ahead of me! My trailer is now at the merged point and I am ahead of that point in the tractor. I am waiting for this car to go under the trailer. I'm trying to see forward, to my left, and of course watching the right side through the mirrors. In these few seconds I am wondering if I will roll the semi and if that happens, the vehicles on my left are in for a huge surprise. Or will I drag this vehicle and rip it to pieces and have a death to deal with??? At the last possible second, the vehicle slows down and moves away from me, almost coming to a complete stop. So many drivers think they have the right of way when on the ramp. Wrong! You are the one to merge safely with the traffic and maybe stop if needed. Naturally I am thankful that nothing happened.

My nerves were shot by the time I reached my destination. After I dropped the trailer and got the empty one, I finally got to have some of my coffee from my thermos. I took a few moments to relax before facing this traffic for the rest of the night. So thankful to make it home with no mishaps.

A Much Easier Day of Driving

But today is a leisurely day of driving. So relaxing and I can enjoy the fall colors. My first stop will be for breakfast and my first cup of coffee. I can hardly wait to savor the first bite of my sausage egg McMuffin! I love those things. I walk in and tell the counter person, "I'll have the sausage egg McMuffin and coffee to go, please." I'm asked if this is to go or to eat in. Did you not hear me??? Did I mess up your speech by saying it first??? I again say, "This is to go." My order is handed to me and I rush out to the truck to get back on the interstate before biting into my sausage egg Mcmuffin. Couldn't wait! I get the first bite on the ramp. Then I realize that what I have is not a sausage egg McMuffin - it's an egg McMuffin! I knew I should have checked the order before leaving. I'm not happy. I frantically look for my ticket and sure enough, it does say "sausage egg McMuffin." I finished eating, but it just was not what I wanted. Next is the coffee that lasts me to my destination.

It is a beautiful fall day with the sun coming into and then out of view many times as I go through all the hills. When you go through the valleys and near the rivers, you can see the steam and fog rising and it blankets everything. Patches of it were close to the ground with the sun shining above it. You can see this for miles and it also looks like smoke from a distance. All the fall colors blend in perfect harmony. It is an awesome sight to see. Breathtaking.

When I arrive at the receiver, my country station and a rock station are coming in on the same frequency and it does not make good listening. Have not had this happen before. This lasts as long as it takes me to check in with the guard, park loaded trailer, get my empty, and get back on the interstate.

The drive back was even prettier now with more sunlight. I get to enjoy this view for one more trip. I finished my assignment early in the afternoon. Time to go home and enjoy this beautiful day.

Related Articles:

Adventures with a Broken Truck!

Trucking can be difficult with unexpected breakdowns. In this article, TruckerMike explains how he and his trainer handled a breakdown, and the resulting repair costs and downtime. He also shares advice on how to handle similar situations in the future.

More Snow? Now What's A Desert Dude to Do?

Truck driver Farmer Bob recounts his experiences while driving in bad weather conditions. He offers tips on how to stay safe and prepare for the worst while driving in snow.

Don't Let the Little Things Bother You....Just Roll On

TruckerMike offers a rookie's perspective on how to stay calm, manage stress, and make the most out of the unpredictability of truck driving. Find out how to enjoy the ride and let go of the little things.

My First Solo Run as a Truck Driver

This truck driver shares their story of the eventful yet successful first solo run in a big truck. With a breakdown, locked door, and heavy traffic, the driver learned a lot and managed to complete their run successfully.

My Recent Trucking Adventures - Quite A Challenge

Trucker Mike encountered a pre-plan and navigational challenges on a recent trip. He dealt with a heavy weight, tight schedule, and special back-in scenarios. He enjoyed the challenge and offers tips on how to stay safe and deal with stress in the trucking industry.

Why Join Trucking Truth?

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training