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Roses & Razzberries

Here's an old bat story left over from Halloween. Razzberries to Arlene Stetson of Coventry, CT. Arlene complained to the town's planning and zoning commission that tractor-trailers and dump trucks continually pass her house, which is along a major thoroughfare for the town. A local newspaper reported Arlene's complaint - "We know it's a thoroughfare, but there are semis. They go down there all day long. I can't believe that this community can't do anything about it."

The members of the commision told her that the road is public and there's no ordinance preventing trucks from using the road.

rose to the Detroit Free Press for printing trucker Charlie (Catfish) Lewis' pet peeve. Catfish thinks turn signals ought to be optional equipment on cars because he says 90 percent of people don't use them. "Sheesh," says Catfish. "Get up earlier." A rose also goes to Capt. Bob Powers of the Michigan State Police who, according to the article, added a bit of truth and balance by stating that cars cause 70 percent of the accidents between cars and big trucks.

Do you know one trucker who doesn't prefer a restroom that is cleaned daily and supplied with tissue paper, soap and paper towels? A razzberry to Express America Truck & Auto in Hillsboro, NC, which was caught on Aug. 25 with none of the above. But there's more. Our disgusted OOIDA member says there was human feces on the toilets, floors and walls. Complaints got him nowhere. Not even a call to the health department got results. Seems the restroom was not in the restaurant.

September's Reader's Digest slug on the cover read: "Scared By Trucks? You Should Be." A razzberry to Malcolm McConnell for raising more than a few hackles over his story "Rigged for Disaster" in which he points out that truckers get dangerously tired, have inadequate training, break the rules and drive rolling wrecks. A reprint may be obtained by calling 800-289-6457.

One OOIDA member writes, "Lately it seems truckers sure do take the brunt of it in advertising copy," and suggests a razzberry be awarded to GE Capital Insurance Co. for their pre-sorted bulk mailing in September marketing term life insurance. The one with the speeding Kenworth on the cover and the headline: "Suddenly it hits you."

Another OOIDA member says WTVD news channel 11 in Raleigh, NC, deserves a razzberry for their report on the rise in syphilis cases along I-95. Several counties were named, including Wake County, a county where there are no rest stops or truckstops. While running a clip of a semi on a highway the script named truckers as the culprits for the Wake County problem, due to the fact there are a number of "gentlemen's clubs" along the interstate. Wake County is, however, nearly 50 miles from I-95.

Roses to Wendy Gould, a Canadian trucker who confronted an Ontario Provincial Police officer who cut her off at an entrance ramp nearly causing an accident. Wendy pulled her rig off the road and told the officer she was "extremely disappointed with his driving." When the officer began yelling at her and refused to give out his badge number, Wendy wrote down the cruiser's license number and phoned police headquarters from her truck. Next she filed a verbal complaint with the OPP.