Life On The Road - Sometimes You Have One Of Those Weeks

by Rhonda
  • Blogs By Author

  • Blogs By Tag

The end of my great day started at the enclosed dock on the end. I hate this kind of dock. I had been here several times and on my way here, I just knew that I would get it again.

Sure enough, after checking in, I get the last dock on the end by the short wall that surrounds the small parking lot. I drive along the dock openings and head to the end dock. When the tractor is at my opening, I crank hard left to avoid the short wall in front of me and get set up for the backing. As I am going left, I wished again that the parking lot would be a wee bit bigger for this type of turn and it would make backing into any of the docks easier.

The backing is going just fine and when my tandems clear the corner of the trailer next to my slot, I turn the wheel hard and jackknife the trailer into the slot. I missed the door frame and the wall of the building which is closer than I prefer to the right side of my trailer. The building was poorly designed it seems, but it may have worked just fine when these trucks were shorter in length. I stop and get out so I can see the right side rear of the trailer and get my bearings so I can finish getting into the dock.

My heart stops when I get to the right side of the trailer. The door is just past the side wall beam about 5 foot inside and if I pull forward I will tear the door off. (for you newbies, when you are at the back of the trailer looking at the doors open against the trailer wall, it looks like a "V". The hinge part is tight against the trailer but the other part of the door by the hook/chain may be 1 to 4 inches out from the side). The doors to this trailer had about 1 inch of play or less and when backing up, the beam touches the hinge part of the door. So while backing up it moves to the front of the door, pushing it closer to the trailer. Then when free, the door pops out again.

After seeing the mess I got myself into, it looked fairly simple to get out of, so I put my plan to work. Well, It did not work. That trailer door on this brand new trailer popped right off and landed in the parking lot. I am not a happy person. This should not have happened and no one is to blame but me.

The yard jockeys come over to me and tell me that they will put the trailers in these docks if the OTR drivers don't want to do it. "Now you tell me this!" I "scream" at them. They picked up the door and put it in the trailer.

I call my Safety Director at home to tell him I had good and bad news. I told him that the new trailers with the hinges that snap off to save damaging the doors really do work, and it happened to me!

I ended up taking the trailer to a local shop and dropping it off. I picked up my other trailer back at the customer and went to the truck stop for the night. When I went into the restroom to wash up, the paper towel dispenser fell to the floor when I touched it!! "What next??" I said to myself.

The next day started off better until I got onto a dirt construction road. They put those spikes in the road about 6 inches out from the curb that you can't see and I ripped open the 2 outside tires. Holy crap what a week this is turning into! I had one heck of a time turning that heavy load on this type of road. The tire shop, which was also our tire repair shop away from home, fixed the tires. I then dropped that trailer off for the other driver and got my new trailer. I survived the rest of the week but was very paranoid wondering what and when is something else going to happen.

Related Articles:

Tractor Trailer Brakes On Fire!

A truck driver had the alertness to recognize a brake fire and the courage to act. The driver and a passing truck driver used fire extinguishers, but the fire department was still needed to put out the fire. Learn the best response to a brake fire in an emergency.

Seeing The Aftermath Of A Trailer Rollover

A truck driver recounts a harrowing experience on the open road. After a long day, he hears a loud noise near his truck stop and finds an overturned double trailer. Fortunately, he was able to avoid a disaster. Learn best practices for truck drivers to stay safe on the roads.

My Best Trip in a Big Truck Yet!

Truck driver TruckerMike recounts his best trip yet, which included dealing with congested traffic, tackling the Rocky Mountains, and stopping for a meal at the Big Texan in Amarillo, TX. He experienced beautiful views and faced a few dangers along the way.

Reaching 300,000 Miles In A Big Rig

This article follows a truck driver on their journey to reach 300,000 miles. Learn about the challenges they faced, such as playing leap frog with another driver, avoiding bad weather, and dealing with unprofessional drivers. The driver eventually makes it back to the yard safely.

The Ups And Downs Of Life On The Road

Dee and I have been on the road for a little more than a week and have learned many tips and tricks for trucking success. Learn about where to park, what to do when you run out of hours, and how to prepare simple meals in your truck. Plus, read about a funny story of being pulled over and an experience at a truck stop.

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