Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sidestepping Nemo Wasn't All That Hard

We drove from Carson, California to Hicksville, New York at breakneck speed.  In our truck, breakneck tops out at 60 mph.  We had a hot team load that had to be there Friday morning.  The day the ridiculously named winter blizzard Nemo was supposed to arrive.  We were a tad concerned.

Ed always likes to drop off one load and pick up another in the same day, maximizing revenue.  So we booked a load that afternoon out of Newark.  We watched The Weather Channel in the meantime.  It looked like it was going to be hairy, but most of the impact was going to be north of us, so we didn't give it too much thought.

At the port in Newark, while waiting for our load to be ready, this is what was happening - lots of dreary gray skies, some rain and a few gusts of wind.
By the time we loaded and left, the roads surrounding the port looked like this.  I don't think I've ever seen the roads around the port so deserted on a weekday afternoon.  Sure, they're quiet after hours and on weekends, but to be there in the middle of the afternoon and not see another vehicle?  Not to pass any Guatemelan/Ecuadorian/Puerto Rican food trucks serving lunch?  Clearly, these people were closing up shop pretty damn early.   
The load was oversized, so we wouldn't be able to drive anywhere after dark.  We had to make some progress, so we started to head out as soon as we were loaded.  No stopping until we got to Pennsylvania, that was the plan.  But instead, we hit a whole lot of this:
And even more of this:
As it got later, the traffic got heavier and moved slower.  We never did make it out of New Jersey that night, and the next day we weren't able to make it across Pennsylvania because with an oversized load, we were only allowed to drive until noon on Saturday and no movement on Sunday. 

So we were stuck for the entire weekend, in a rest area with no internet, and a shitty, uneven parking lot.  No matter how we moved the truck, we couldn't get the sleeper to sit without leaning forward and to the right.  Not a very comfortable position to be in for two full days.  So Ed had the genius idea to drop our trailer in one spot, and park the tractor next to it.  This allowed us to be on the crest of the hump in the parking lot, which evened out the way the truck was sitting, which meant I didn't have to have my leg cocked out like a kickstand to hold myself in my dinette seat.

The rules for over-dimensional loads are nonsensical and unreasonable - and if you really want to get to the root of the whole trucking aspect of it, unsafe - but that's a rant for another post. 

I wanted snow and I got some.  Even though we missed the bulk of it, which I suppose is preferable in the transportation industry, I suspect we'll be seeing a lot more of it since we plan on staying in the area for a while. 

Since there were people stranded on the roadways in some cases for more than ten hours (by the way, those people are morons), I think they really need to reconsider the naming of these storms, because giving what they claimed was going to be an apocalyptic snowstorm, the name of a cute little clownfish, obviously didn't cause enough fear in people.

They really need to name the next big storm the Stay-The-Fuck-Home-Or-You-Will-Be-Buried-Alive Blizzard of 2013.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
2012: Fun, Fresh, Fabulous Little Neighborhood
2011: What Do You Get When The Daily Rant Meets The Plum Trucker? A Plum Crush!
2010: Industrial Morning
2009: Sunset On Venice
2008: Knots And Nautical Miles
2007: What Is The World Coming To When The Girls Next Door Think They Are Fat??
2006: T.T.D.L.I.T.H.A.T.I.F.
2005: Sorry, no post on this day. The blog didn’t start until May 2005!


Gil said...

Glad to hear that you two are okay! I was beginning to wonder what happened to you and Ed. I guess you should consider yourselves lucky that you didn't get stuck on the highway, no batter how bad the place you parked in turned out to be. There were people stuck on the LIE for ten to twelve hours. We ended up with a little more than 24" of snow. My nephew lives in Hamden, CT North of New Haven and Hamden set the record for CT with 40". Good thing he and his wife are young and athletic!

Marlaina said...

We watched the storm on CNN while in Bangkok, and really ladies, another storm of the century is bearing down and you're wearing high heels.

A blatant waste of taxpayers money, sending rescue crew out to carry these women through the snow to safety.

Ah but that's life these days, entitlement.

The Daily Rant said...

GIL: The people on the LIE are exactly who I'm talking about! Who the hell goes out when they were told not to?? At least if we got stranded, we're self-contained. I'm so jealous of you guys with 2 feet of snow and your nephew with 40 freakin' inches!! I haven't seen snow like that in years!

MARLAINA: In Arizona we have something called the "Stupid Motorist Law" which says that anyone who gets stuck or stranded because they drove around barricades or through flooded roads (we have a LOT of flooding during monsoons) have to pay the cost of their rescue if emergency crews have to come out to save them. People think they can make it through the flooded washes but don't realize the force of the water and often get swept away in it. They should do that everywhere when people don't heed warnings. Their stupidity may be taking emergency personnel away from someone who really needs it. They'd be the last people I'd help. Seriously - women in high heels? They deserve frostbite.