Monday, July 18, 2016

Off-Road Driving

Keep the dirty side down—a truck driver’s way of saying have a safe trip. In the case of the place I drive, where we haul garbage to a landfill, through the man-made mud (thanks to truck loads of water constantly being dumped to keep down the dust, all sides of the truck are dirty. So, the saying loses some of its significance.

The road to the site is paved but narrow and has a few corners. When meeting other traffic, you absolutely can’t move over. Though it goes against all instinct, you have to hug the centerline because the 1-foot shoulder is very soft. If a trailer tire goes onto the shoulder, you’re sunk—or the trailer is. The shoulder gives way and it pulls the trailer, and then the truck, right into the ditch.

As you can imagine, the ditch is not all that solid either so the entire truck then sinks—well, at the least the side that is not on the pavement does. And then physics finishes things off, giving the driver a ride they hadn’t anticipated as the truck and trailer turns over.

While this scene is far from an everyday occurrence, it does happen occasionally. Last Monday was the latest incident. Over the next two days, I got a good look (several looks actually) at the truck laying there on the side of the road. Surprisingly, it didn’t look all that damaged. Of course, I couldn’t see the side that was on the ground.

What I did notice though, was that the bottom of the truck, or what was supposed to be the bottom of the truck, was by far the cleanest side. Apparently, the swirling spray of water from driving in the man-made puddles, washes away the mud on the underside but doesn’t do such a magnificent job on the rest of the truck. This realization has led to a modified version of the old trucker’s saying—that will probably never be understood by other drivers unless they work at my job —keep the clean side down! ~

Bruce A. Borders is the author of more than a dozen books, including: Inside Room 913, Over My Dead Body, The Journey, Miscarriage Of Justice, The Lana Denae Mysteries, and The Wynn Garrett Series. Available in ebook at and paperback on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. Bruce A. Borders is a proud member of Rave Reviews Book Club.


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