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Old 12-14-2009, 07:36 AM   #295
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I have noticed in recent years almost all the trucks are sleepers. This saves money for the trucking companies. The company can track the truck via satellite and make sure the driver is driving to the maximum allowed. At the end of the maximum hours, then the trucker may have to drive some more to find a spot to park. I believe during the last administration the hours a trucker could drive were extended at the behest of the industry. This is bad for the driver and bad for everyone else who shares the road with these guys. Parking space for trucks appears to be quite limited.
That's really all that needed to be said.
I have never overnighted at a truck stop. They all seem to have several RV spaces near the gas islands. Sometimes there are cars, pickups and vans in them and I admit to being annoyed since there are usually plenty of spaces for them when I want to park in a RV space to eat in the restaurant. I can't imagine sleeping next to a diesel running all night, or inhaling the fumes. When we stop at a rest stop to eat lunch, sometimes we have a truck next to us, sometimes two (if we can't avoid it) and the noise does not make for a relaxing time. Truckers have to live with that all the time.
Truck driving used to have some romance associated with it, but I don't think it's the same now. It seems just like another bad job.
Gene
Gene you are so correct in your assessment. Yes the last administration did cave to business money to change hours of service to longer times which is the amount of hours a driver is allowed to drive and work per day, which every driver was against. In addition to that they made it legal for trucks to be monitored by satillite forcing the trucks to stop at the end of their time which again brings us back to the trucks being forced to stop.

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Old 12-14-2009, 07:47 AM   #296
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I did not mean to call anyone any names, imply they are bad people, or anything of the nature, and if I have indicated that to anyone I am sorry.
I was only attempting to point out to everyone that when traveling before they park in a truck stop to look at other alternatives that is available to them and are not available to trucks, and that it is their choice and to make a better choice.
Remember this; When trucks stop America stops, there is not anything one has or does that does not involve a truck in one way or another. Supply & Demand.

So I am going to drop this subject and go back to just watching this thread, but if anyone wants to talk with me about what trucks face in doing their job, I will be glad to do so and I believe that one will find that the knowledge can be very enlightning.

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Old 12-14-2009, 10:10 AM   #297
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I did not mean to call anyone any names, imply they are bad people, or anything of the nature, and if I have indicated that to anyone I am sorry.
I was only attempting to point out to everyone that when traveling before they park in a truck stop to look at other alternatives that is available to them and are not available to trucks, and that it is their choice and to make a better choice.
Remember this; When trucks stop America stops, there is not anything one has or does that does not involve a truck in one way or another. Supply & Demand.

So I am going to drop this subject and go back to just watching this thread, but if anyone wants to talk with me about what trucks face in doing their job, I will be glad to do so and I believe that one will find that the knowledge can be very enlightning.

Sarge
Sarge, I'm not a trucker, but I can relate to what you have posted here. There have been times when I have been towing on the interstates and pull into a rest area. Some of these rest areas have limited parking for trucks and rv's. A few times I have found autos parked in the rv and truck spaces and sometimes I've had to pull on through and try to find another rest area or someplace else to stop.
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Old 12-14-2009, 02:51 PM   #298
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A few years ago we took a two week trip and I made a list of Walmarts that would be at points where all we needed was an overnight stop. I even went so far as to call those stores in advance to make sure there wasn't any local ordinance agianst staying in their lot.

First night was spent at the Walmart in Junction City, KS. Worst night in the AS ever. Allow me to elaborate...

Warm night so we had to leave the windows open (no generator to run the AC) so plenty of bright parking lot lights shining in. The lot also had an amazing amount of traffic all night. To add to that noise were some near-by railroad tracks with trains rolling by what seemed to be every hour. Topping it all off, once I was finally able to drift off to sleep near dawn, a street sweeper truck came in to clean the lot.

Well, I got a free place to stay for the night, but I got what I paid for. The other overnight stops we had to make on that trip were at campgrounds where I gladly paid just to have a quiet nights rest. Even at a noisy KOA near Springfield, MO I was able to run the blower on the AC and drown it all out.

For heavy sleepers, check out Walmart. For me, it will only be used as a last resort.

Christopher
My wife and I stopped in a walmart in Tell City, IN, parked way down in the front corner of the lot. A man and a woman in separate cars start chasing each other . THey end up outside our front door fighting, an other carload comes up and joins the melee. I couldn't find my cell phone to call 911. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, three or four squad cars come up and sort everything out. It was an exciting night in the middle of January!
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Old 12-14-2009, 03:24 PM   #299
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My wife and I stopped in a walmart in Tell City, IN, parked way down in the front corner of the lot. A man and a woman in separate cars start chasing each other . THey end up outside our front door fighting, an other carload comes up and joins the melee. I couldn't find my cell phone to call 911. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, three or four squad cars come up and sort everything out. It was an exciting night in the middle of January!
Some people have all the fun.

Never witnessed a fight but one night I asked a waitress in a Cracker Barrel in Ohio if it was OK to park for the night. She did not answer and 5 minutes later the manager stopped by the table.

I understand you wanted to park for the night. I answered not at this Cracker Barrel but maybe one a few miles further down the road. He answered "good I don't suggest you park here" Why I asked? "Well you see we are atop a hill overlooking route 80. The prostitutes set up here and work the truckers with their CBs and the cops raid the place several times each night" We moved on down the road that night.
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Old 12-14-2009, 04:58 PM   #300
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HAH Howie! that reminds of when I was a long haul trucker. (I am a retired 6th grade teacher, during the summers I would drive a 18 wheeler to CA and back with produce to here in Missouri.)

One night I stopped in Albuquerque, NM at the Flying J, I was out of hours on my log book and worn out. I backed into a parking spot and, if you have ever been to this Flying J, it backs up on a hill and has a wonderful, panoramic view of Albuquerque.

The view was so great that I lay in the sleeper cab and didn't bother to close the curtains. I fell fast asleep.

Later, I woke up and turned on the interior lights to see what time it was. I turned them off and went back to sleep when I heard a banging on the driver's side door of my truck.

I mean to tell you my heart started pounding, I didn't know what was happening. I hollered out asking what they wanted. The woman said you called me. I said no I didn't just get away from my truck.

Just about daybreak I woke up again and turned on the interior lights, looked at my watch, turned the lights out and laid back and looked at the city lights.

Again, with the door banging. I said this time to get away from me and my truck. I put my shoes on and started the truck and drove to the fuel island and got fuel.

As I was paying for the fuel I told the cashier about my experiences. She told me that a signal that a driver wanted a hooker, to flash his interior lights.

I guess, in turning on my interior lights to look at my watch and turning them off again could be interpreted as "flashing".

I never stopped there again.
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Old 12-14-2009, 06:17 PM   #301
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You just have to know the language of the land.

In the 60s I was stationed in Augusta Ga. If you went into the woods at night and place a light lantern on a tree stump and stepped back till the light went out you had a jar of "Lightning" by the lantern.

I bet you worn a glowing dial watch ever since.

Has for those who think you save money by parking at Wal Mart let me say it cost me more per night at Wal Mart than at a campground. We alway go in for a walk to wind down before turning in and end up spending more than a campground fee.
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Old 12-14-2009, 07:33 PM   #302
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Some years ago—more than 20 I think—the truck stop at I-70 and Ward Rd. west of Denver was a wild place. As I drove by I'd turn on the CB and listen to the truckers talking about everything illegal. It was quite "educational".

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Old 12-14-2009, 07:38 PM   #303
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Jim Lee, we would have given anything to have been on a Walmart parking lot several weeks ago when we were victums of an attempted armed robbery. Instead of a Walmart we were camped at a private campground at 9pm in a deserted area. We have no idea why we were not harmed that night. There was no one around but luckely our cell phone did have coverage and we were able to summond help. At least with a Walmart we could have run inside the store instead of being so scared that we did not want to return to our Airstream.
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Old 12-14-2009, 07:44 PM   #304
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Please share the location of this campground Thanks.
Glad you are okay, we always try and stay around people in strange towns and places. Not in an isolated area alone you are a sitting duck .
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:34 PM   #305
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Walmart overnite...

We run up and down I-95 SC to MD. I always stay over at Walmart at Roanoke Rapids, NC. Last nite on the way back from Philly and the Army/Navy game, we were southbound and I almost opted for the back lot of the truckstop in Emporia, VA. But I got a creepy vibe about being too isolated so ran 15 miles to the Roanoke Rapids stop.

Good thing too! I ran my generator all nite for electric heat (ran out of propane) and had a dead battery this morning. So at 0600, walk into the 24hr Wally World for either a new battery (mine is 5 yrs old), a jumper battery pack (my old trusty one finally died this summer), or -best option- Walmart garage employee came out w/their jumper box and got me started. I'd have been stuck in the back of some truck stop!

Another time we had a shreaded tire on my tow dolly discovered after pulling into the parking lot for the night. Very convenient to go in and buy a new tire or tire/wheel!

So I'm a fan of Walmart camping.
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Old 12-14-2009, 10:37 PM   #306
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Great post except for the line:
"So I'm a fan of Walmart camping."
It's overnight parking
It's a rest stop.
It will be eliminated if it is abused, don't do all the things of camping, slides, bbq's, trash etc.
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Old 12-15-2009, 11:34 AM   #307
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As far as trucks on the road it is supply and demand by the public that dictates what method of transportation is used and the speed in which it has to arrive.
This is the very heart of the matter. We want it and we want it now. I realize that the U.S.'s geography and distances between point to point is part of the reason that trains in Europe rule transportation for both people and products and trucking rules it here.

As far as China, we don't want to spend $$$ for a shirt or pair of jeans. So they are made in third world countries. When is the last time you looked "for the union label"? Would you really pay more for a garment made in America? Most of us would give lip service and say yes, but in practice we want the inexpensive cloths. Imagine how much more a Polo by Ralph Loren would cost if it were made in America! They cost enough as it is when they come from Sri-Lanca. Same for good ole Levis. Wal-Mart, love 'em or heat 'em, has become the world's largest discount store because we aren't willing to pay more for garments, electronics, and everything else in their inventory to get American made products.

For years Zennith was the gold standard for televisions and once Sony became the quality competition Zenith moved manufacture to other countries and they went out of business a few years ago because they couldn't compete on price. And the old saying, "you get what you pay for" is alive and well in America. If we made quality the first and most important priority in choosing a product in stead of price, we wouldn't have to keep replacing that hand mixer or computer, etc. every couple of years. The U.S. is the second/sometimes third largest exporter in the world. Imagine that. We are up their with China, Germany and Japan in that department. If it weren't for our oil imports we would never run a trade deficit and the dollar would never go down in value. There is a market for American made goods, just not in America.

So we have ourselves to blame for the loss of manufacturing jobs to "off shore" producers. Or at least the U.S. consumer is to blame for wanting a lessor price.
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Old 12-15-2009, 12:27 PM   #308
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We are getting away from the topic, but that's ok with me as we have pretty much beat it to death.

I think 'mate brings up some interesting points, which I sort of disagree with in some regard. RR's have always been run badly in this country and suffered frequent bankruptcies. They lost business because they deserved to. It was a great waste of infrastructure investment.

We do look for well made clothes, but they sure are hard to find. We just went to 3 stores in the other day looking something my father-in-law wanted and it all was made in Asia and the quality looked poor. Barb ended up ordered off the internet where she found American made for a lot more money, but it will last. We have generally tried to find things made in the US, Canada or other industrialized countries where quality is better and workers get paid a decent wage. It can be very hard to do. Remember when toasters used to last decades? Not anymore.

Yes the US is a major exporter and yes our oil imports are our great weakness. We have to switch to renewables, but entrenched industries and well paid lobbyists fight it all the way. They would rather weaken our economy because they could care less about the US or it's citizens. I put Walmart in there with them.

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