Thursday, March 20, 2008

Kentucky trucker

Where I'm going. Where I've been
1-75, Somewhere in Kentucky, December 2007

Big news here in Ontario this week, where our near-communist* government enacted legislation forcing all truckers to install speed limiters. This will cap them at 105 km/h, or about 64 mph. Works for me: speeding trucks scare the bejeebers out of me every time I drive my family on a highway.

* OK, Ontario isn't really a communist society. But our Liberal government, headed by Premier Dalton McGuinty, has broken countless election promises since coming to power a few years back. And in the long-lived tradition of Canadians getting what they deserve, the good burghers of this province voted the morons back into power last year - and they continue to do what they please, with no regard to citizen input. So we essentially have elected officials who are not responsive to the citizens we lead. Ergo, communism.

Your turn: Big trucks, and the small people like us who hate them. Please discuss.


Anna said...

Did you know I am from KY? Bet you didnt. :) Thanks for your comment Carmi on my blog. Glad you liked my Project Red. I will be looking to see if you do a theme!

Have a great weekend!

Chad Oneil Myers said...

Big trucks can be scary for sure.

I like them though. My grandfather was a truck driver for most of his life...that was one of his passions. Now, he's learning how to be retired.

Very cool image, Carmi.

Megan said...

The worst is having an 18-wheeler less than a car length behind your little Mini at 80 or so miles an hour. Yikes.

Jason Roth said...

We're not much better. Afterall, we voted Bush in for a second term.

Marion said...

Love the photo, Carmi.

The last time I drove the Fraser Canyon, I had a trucker right behind me for most of the way. He would slow on the twisty, hilly areas...and then would drive really fast on the straight stretches, staying right behind me. He pushed me into going faster than I wanted...I finally pulled off the road.

It seems there are more and more of the truckers on the highways these day.

Jean-Luc Picard said...

Good pic there, Carmi.

Michele sent me.

lissa said...

Good post, Carmi. It's an increasing problem. After seeing a 20/20 report on how truckers don't nap the required hours they should, I stay even FURTHER from them! The worst is how, in inclement weather, they cause their own snowstorm (not cleaning off their rigs), windshield hazards (sheets of ice breaking off their rooves and heading for a driver's face), or hurricanes caused by water they splash up. That's all without addressing the speed and recklessness. I've been flashed by a trucker's lights when I'm doing the speed limit in the right-hand lane...tailgated till I was intimidated to speed up, and honked when I didn't. I think limiters should be mandatory everywhere!!

Nestor Family said...

Love the photo, Carmi.

Big trucks... big draft winds... big scary!

Stella Dean said...

my step dad is a truck driver and he hates the "governor" but I've worked for attorneys for too many years to not applaud the effort.

Stella Dean said...

PS - Michele sent me.

craziequeen said...

Hi Carmi - as far as I know, lorries here are fitted with limiters now. There are also laws about driving times.
Most trucks carry that 'How am I driving?' stickers. When they're terrible or thoughtless I really am tempted to call in and complain but I forget by the time I reach my destination!

I think you'll like the video on my blog tonight :-)


Anonymous said...

Well, I'm currently driving a monstrously large vehicle myself, I just got a Toyota FJ Cruiser & so am up on a level with the large truck drivers, at least in the height sense. However, they are dangerous & do drive like they're driving sports cars rather than 18 wheelers.
Michele sent me to consider this with you.

Anonymous said...

I don't drive the freeway here, in part because of the trucks. If I HAVE to share the road with them, I stay only in the lane with a shoulder so I cannot be boxed in anymore! Nothing like driving down the freeway and all you can't see the road.

Sleepypete said...

I've noticed a phenomena I'm calling "sports car gravity"

I never spotted it when I was driving my previous cars but it strikes very often in my Puma (small 2 seater coupe). As you're going past the truck, the "Sports Car Gravity" phenomena interacts with the Jealousy Factor in the head of the truck driver.

The interaction usually results in the truck, which was previously going in a nice straight line, moving gently but surely into the same lane as the sports car, scaring the heebeegeebees out of the small sports car driver.

Jenny said...

Great photo!

And I love your blog too. As you predicted, I'm intrigued and will return!

John said...

Truck drivers get paid by the mile so any possible way to go more miles in less time is to their advantage, in other words, more miles in less time equals more money. They drive trucks to make money...plain and simple. With the rise of fuel prices and now laws like these, soon they will all be out of business. While technology is seemingly what makes the world go 'round, you still need product with which to use those technologies.

I totally understand wanting to slow truck traffic in urban areas, but making it a law is equivalent to fining YOU for making good use of your time. I say slow them down in the cities and let 'em fly in the country. Most of them are much better drivers than you and I will ever be.

John said...

I should not even be here posting a comment. I'll probably just get mad. There are truckers that should have limiters, or governors. The discussion is going on here in the US now. But there are a large number of reasons why this law should NOT be passed. No room for all that here. But the worst problem is the small percentage, and it is very small, of truckers who tailgate and drive dangerously making it harder for the rest of us that don't. I try to be the safest driver that I can. Shame on those who don't. Big rig or 4-wheeler. It makes no difference at all.

carmilevy said...

I posted this comment on John's blog, Life is just still life:

Hi John. Thanks for your honest comment on blog. Quoting you:

"... there are a large number of reasons why this law should NOT be passed. No room for all that here."

No room for all that here? That's a little disappointing. You either choose to make your argument, or you don't. Last I saw, there were no space limitations on Blogger comments. If you have an argument, make it.

"But the worst problem is the small percentage, and it is very small, of truckers who tailgate and drive dangerously making it harder for the rest of us that don't."

I'll politely differ with you on the "small percentage" estimate. Every time I take to the highway, I am forced to deal with a constant stream of massive trucks driven by idiots who manage to scare the living crap out of me. And I've been driving for decades, with a perfectly clean - no accidents, no moving violations - record. Unless you can provide numbers to back your claim, I'll stick with my own personal experience as my guide. Not to mention the experience of virtually every other driver I know. Ask around: your "small percentage" claim is laughable on a good day.

"I try to be the safest driver that I can. Shame on those who don't."

Thank you for that. You're in the minority. That's a damn shame, for your own reputation is sullied in the process.

"Big rig or 4-wheeler. It makes no difference at all."

Again, I'll choose to differ. It makes a huge difference. Momentum, aerodynamics, visibility...couple an 18-wheeler with an idiot driver and you have a menace on the road. Multiply it by hundreds of trucks per hour and you have the makings of a disaster.

I'll humbly suggest your profession needs a little help in the PR department, not to mention a wholesale rethink on staffing, compensation and monitoring.