Do you have a death wish?

Gas Station Delivery

In my industry, Safety is paramount. We train our drivers to always error on the side of caution and safety.

One of my drivers came in and relayed a situation he had tonight at a station in Southwestern Arizona.

When a driver arrives at a gas station to make a delivery, he has to park the truck in a specific location in order to reach the connections for the underground storage tanks.  Drivers deploy orange safety cones around the perimeter of the area, and nobody is allowed to enter the area while the delivery is being made.

Apparently, a pickup full of high IQ people tried to run him down in the station. The driver drove over the cones, and came directly at the trailer. My driver put himself between the truck and the fill hoses. At this point, there is 400 gallons per minute of gasoline flowing through the hoses and into the tanks. Any breach in the hose could result in a fireball that would destroy the station.

So, my driver is yelling at the pickup driver (who was female) to stop. The driver is lurching the pickup forward a little at a time, apparently trying to get the driver to move.  By the time the truck actually stopped, it was on top of the drop fittings that connect to the ground, and inches from disaster.

Two drunk guys proceeded to exit the truck and start threatening my driver because he was “in the way.” This particular driver has an extensive history in law enforcement, and had started working for us when he retired from carrying a badge and gun.  While Idiot #1 is telling him that he’s “about to feel the pain,” he’s telling both of them that they are about to make the biggest mistake of their lives.

While this is going on, apparently several other customers at the station are starting to gather behind our drunken tough guys. The obvious intention was that these idiots were about to “feel the pain,” and then spend a long time in Federal custody, while they healed.

Cooler heads finally prevailed, and the drunken circus loaded up and departed, still yelling threats of violence.

What they didn’t realize, or seem to care about, is that what they were doing can be classified as Domestic Terrorism. They were interfering with a Hazardous Materials unit, attempting to cause a spill, or worse.  Their best case scenario would be that Homeland Security would have to pump daylight to them for the next few years. The worst case scenario would be a big hole in the ground, and a few dozen fatalities.

Why would you tangle with a fuel tanker, either parked or moving?

Hi there

What you don’t want to see in your rear view mirror. DPS Commercial Vehicle Enforcement unit doing a roadside inspection today.

While driving back from a delivery in Mesa, I encountered a Commercial Vehicle Enforcement officer on the side of the road. Actually, I encountered him in traffic and we made our mutual acquaintances on the shoulder of the road.

A little over an hour later, I was on my way with nary a violation found. That was a blessing, since he checked everything on that truck, and my background and character and abilities.

The State of Arizona has to make revenue somewhere. Keep up the good work, Officer Stanley!

Oh, the picture is my view of his vehicle in my rear-view mirror.

AvGas to Moab

I just came back from Moab, UT. I delivered AvGas at their local airport. I arrived last night, but was too late to unload, so I waited until this morning to try again. It is a beautiful drive up here!

Occasionally, on the Travel Channel, they will show specials about the Southwestern US. I went right through the prettiest parts of it yesterday and today.

From the rock monoliths of Monument Valley to the high forests of the La-Sal National Forest, and all the rock formations in between. Beautiful country. 

AvGas to Moab

Hayden Junction

I pulled a load of Red-Dye diesel to a placed called Hayden Junction last night. You go East from Phoenix until you get to Superior and then go South! And there is a 10% grade to navigate…both directions. In the rain! That was fun. 200 miles roundtrip. 

The best part of the trip? Driving along US 60 between Apache Junction and Florence Junction, and seeing the fireworks over Queen Creek/San Tan Valley, to the south.

Last night being the 4th and all that.

Vegas, Baby

Looking at Buffalo Bill’s Hotel & Casino at Primm, NV.

Ok, now I remember why I stopped driving long-haul. I left for Vegas on the 27th about 17:00. Drove up, unloaded and made it back to Kingman before I took my break. Left Kingman yesterday about noon and drove back to Phoenix, reloaded and headed for Primm, NV (CA/NV state line on I-15) with a load for Chevron. Made it to Primm, unloaded and couldn’t get the brakes to release on one axle!

I ended up overnighting at one of the hotels in Primm. Road repair came out in the morning and adjusted the brakes on the truck and trailer. They were all 1/4 turn too tight, and the suspect axle was almost 1/2 turn over-adjusted. Made it back to Phoenix about 18:30 and I’m going to crash.