Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Headed For A Slow Boat To China

We recently did a load that required two armed escorts.

Armed, as in with guns.

The load wasn't going far, but we had to run with another truck. I wasn't too thrilled about that part - especially since the other team was less than professional.  We weren't told when we accepted the load that we'd have to travel with another truck, we found out the day the load was leaving. We were already there, so there was no sense in backing out, and the load paid too much to even consider not taking it. So much, that the other team deadheaded over 600 miles just to come get it!

I drove the first part of the trip and declined the lead status - I didn't want to be bothered manning the walkie-talkie - so the other team became the lead truck.  That was a mistake.

This was our view for 900 miles:

We picked up our 20' container at a container yard, then had to drive to another location to have it loaded.  From the minute we heard we'd have armed guards, I was curious about what we were hauling.  It wasn't a "sensitive" government load.  It wasn't hazmat.  It wasn't being tracked by Qualcomm.  We didn't have to make check calls.  It was just regular 'ol freight, posted on the freight board.  Any team could haul it.  What could it be?

Most drivers just take the paperwork and don't even bother to look at it.  I scoured it for clues.  Ed and I were on Google, entering every bit of info we could, including the manufactuer, and the place it was eventually going (China).  What we found was that it was some kind of chemical catalyst used in making an organic glass compound.  Ah, phooey!  Nothing really cool

The trip itself was uneventful.  The team in the other truck drove entirely too fast, not even considering the two other vehicles following them, and ignored several safety rules along the road (which pissed me off - Ed didn't let it bother him).  I did the speed limit, figuring if the other truck got out of sight, the escorts would radio them and reign them in.  I wasn't going to get a speeding ticket trying to keep up with Mario Andretti and his wife.  I did learn a lesson though - next time, we'll be the lead truck and set the pace.   

The escort was third in line, so he pretty much stuck with me, like a stealth tail.  I didn't even know he was there.  But they were.  Because although the chemical didn't have "street value" - meaning, I couldn't take it to a pawn shop and sell it - the client wanted to make sure it made it to its destination safely and got on the ship without issue.

Oh, and it was worth about twenty million dollars.  Yeah, that.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
2012: A Roaring Forties Tasmanian Devil Of A Blue
2011: Waiter! There’s A Beer In My Soup!
2010: Id’ Rather Go Naked Than Wear Wolf
2009: Eddie Getting His Licks Friday
2008: The Place Is In Ruins
2007: Winter Shadows
2006: The Angels Of The New York D.O.T.
2005: Sorry, no post on this day. The blog didn’t start until May 2005!


scott said...

Sounds like an episode of Breaking Bad.

Unknown said...

The reality is that if you are pawning is some item, you are either in need of quick cash, or you are just too lazy to go online and put it up for sale info . Many people go to the pawn shop and except the pawn starts to play the retail value of items. You need to manage your exceptions that you will not get the retail value because the pawn stores need to make profits too.