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3 Month Know-it-alls


other dog

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When I was coming from Macedonia Thursday night headed to Roanoke,running with " BB Brain",somebody started yelling on the radio when we were coming down Sandstone mountain on I-64,east of Beckley. Turns out it was a Swift driver,but it could have been any number of the company drivers you see nowadays. He said "get off your brakes,you're going to burn your brakes up,have to go in the runaway ramp,and never be able to get another job with another company".Then something like "get off your brakes,I smell brakes-you're gonna die in a fiery crash.I see your brake lights,just use your jake brake,or you'll die in a fiery crash,and never be able to get a job with another company-you should kick your trainers a**!- my trainer didn't teach me like that!". And this went on for a while and I was just listening-the Swift and the other truck,I don't remember the name,it was a something-or-other express, were both in front of me,and the other truck driver never answered the Swift driver,so I finally did. As I said,I was behind them,and I never smelled hot brakes.Smelling brakes doesn't really mean anything except your brakes are working-i've had to get on the brakes hard at a red light and could smell brakes when I got stopped.Now,if you can't see the truck for the smoke,and it looks like a burning brush pile coming down the mountain,that's a different story. Maybe the other truck didn't have a jake.Maybe he did and it wasn't working.Maybe he liked his job and didn't want to drive for a different company anyway,but I can see why a Swift driver might assume everybody else does,because he drives for Swift. Jake brakes sure are nice,but I remember when nobody had a jake-you might see one once in a while,but they certainly were not a common item like they are today. Many times I've loaded over 50,000 lbs. of coils at Armco Steel (now AK Steel) in Middletown,Ohio and ran rt. 60 from Charleston,W.V.over to Sam Black Church in an F-model Mack with no engine brake,no power steering,and an AM radio that didn't work-I-64 wasn't even finished,it ended at Sam Black Church.Rt. 60 was the only way you could go,unless you ran the W.V.Turnpike to Princeton,then 460 over to Christiansburg,and picked up I-81. The steel usually went to Harrisonburg or Buena Vista,and that was too far out of the way to go through Princeton,so going across "Hawk's Nest" was no big deal-I still go across there occasionally,just for the adventure.It's very steep,and crooked as a dog's hind leg.So,back to the Swift truck,I finally told him "I guess if you didn't have your jake brake and power steering,and GPS,satellite communication with dispatch,cell phone,and color TV,you'd just park it at the top of the mountain quit,and walk home,since you don't have any brakes except your jake brake".He said "oh no,I could drive this truck without a jake brake-or power steering". I kind of doubt that he could,if he had to run the old road,but it's all he's ever known,having all the modern equipment.That last curve at the bottom of the mountain going into Rainelle would probably be the end of him,like it's been for many others.

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I know exactly where you are coming from.

As near as I can tell - and it has been a while since I was on the road full time - there is always a reason not to listen to the CB - maybe because the music's better on the radio, or you like the sound of the diesel, or you just don't want to listen to the jerks!

Some things will probably never change.

Like I said before - we do it because it's fun!

PVS

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