Don't know what to make of today, got in at 6am and sat in the rest area for an hour. Then low and behold a job, but it initially sounded a lot better as I thought that I'd be driving to Dartford. Got the unit and then sat for 2 hours waiting for a trailer to be loaded.

Then the details came along on the delivery note. Drive to the Langley outhouse and drop the trailer's load, collect another from there and bring it back. Did that twice and drove a whopping total of 15km. Spent more time loading and unloading then driving.

Not complaining as it gave me some exp on tight & blind spot reversing, which will always come in handy. That's it for the next few days, got to have some well earned rest and then on to the night shift for a week.


Back to Royal Mail next week, just got re booked. This time its the nightshift, something that I've not done so it will be interesting to see how it goes.


Today for a change I had an 18T DAF CF, not so sure about the auto gearbox as the changes from 1 to 3 are a bit jerky. Overall it was not a bad wagon. Had a few local trips to the Heathrow 'Horseshoe' delivering bags and bags of mail, all bound for Eastern Europe. On my travels on the Perimeter Road I couldn't help noticing that VOSA were out in force again, they managed to stop a few lorries in their little spot. Getting quite used to driving these red lorries. However driving past the pickets of strikers and being given the evil eye was something new.


Royal Mail all this week, yesterday it was Winchester. Took a trailer load of empty dollies to another hub. The location is in an interesting place, as you come down a hill towards Twyford and when you have to turn right two things spring into mind. Firstly the road doesn't look like it could support an Artic and secondly there is a 7.5T restriction. A stop was called for and a call to the depot was made. Carry on down this road and after the waterworks turn right. Oh well lets have a go, would you believe t the road opens out and just after where I turned the restriction begins. Well now I know so next time it will be less sweat inspiring experience.

Today a jaunt to a number of places to drop off the backload from yesterday, loads more wheeled dollies. Today for a change I drove a Volvo FM12, Euro5 instead of the usual RM DAF CF. Have to admit that it was an enjoyable drive, the Volvo handles fabulously, smooth, and well designed with loads of comfort in the cab.


Now that this week is over I'm going to enjoy my 2 days off. Few pints and relax, after the last week that I've had I think I deserve it.

Essex and Back

Nice shortish trip out to Essex this morning. Had to be in Colnbrook at 6am at a well known company's offices. This time it was a larger Class2 wagon that I got my hands on. Good job that I checked the fuel before setting off otherwise I'd have been pushing the lorry on the way back, quick reverse on to the fuel point and extreme fun was had trying to fill up in the dark. Had to go to Schenker Logistics to load up and then on to Basildon, Essex. 12 pallets of costume jewelry had to be delivered by 9am. The weather was atrocious and as usual the M25 proved to be something in itself. The ongoing roadworks and the 40 & 50mph limits were not helping. Wouldn't it be nice to have a motorway without any road works. Loads of 'Average Speed' cameras and people trying to cut in. Took over an hour to get there and then the unloading which was pretty quick. The journey back as usual was slowed down by the infernal road works but still made it back to Colnbrook by 11:30. Park up, do the paperwork and on the way home by 12:00. Not a bad days work if the weather was better.


White Van Man of sorts

For the last 2 days I've been acting as the scourge of the road, the dreaded White Van Man. Had a call from one of the local agencies and decided to give it a go. Yesterday I was in the darkest depths of London (Lewisham, Peckham, etc) and today in the wilds of the countryside. Have to admit that Wiltshire looks wonderful in Autumn. Not many deliveries (3-4 per day) but spread out so far apart that it took ages to deliver. There is something about bike riders in London, they all seem to want to commit suicide under someone else's wheels. All over for now and the weekend beckons.


Bit of Royal Mail work today. Almost new DAF CF on 08 plate. Start at Slough go to Heathrow to collect mail but wait for ages before it was decided if I was required. Got to admit that getting in and on to the bay was an experience, bloody tight there. Getting out was even better, the metal post at the gate house crept very close to the end of the trailer. Once loaded it was off to Dartford. Nice and relaxing drive on the M25 and local roads and then navigating the side streets to get to the warehouse and onto the bay once more. Offload and back home. Problem when I got back as I couldn't find an empty bay to park the trailer, eventually got one and uncoupled and then really go home. Interesting day but enjoyable. The photo was taken at the Depot in Heathrow.


Back at work and working my notice unless of course the company decides that they'll pay for the duration of the notice. They have been spying on me or someone has put in the bubble. I was shown a copy of the post made on Truckers World, but its how I felt that day and what was posted is true.


Today was a good day, started at 9am in Woking went to Colnbrook to collect a trailer then to Rochester to get loaded up and delivered to Guildford and then back to Woking. All in 8 hours 50 minutes. First time ever driving a Renault. Caused a bit of commotion on the A320 when stopping at a set of traffic lights I inadvertently knocked a switch which shut down the lorry. Everything went blank, no lights, four ways, couldn't do anything. Thought that the wagon broke down as all day it was showing a 'Fuel filter' problem. Called the yard and the mechanic asked me about the switch, low and behold everything was turned back on. The switch is there as the tractor unit is used to pull fuel tankers, something new was learned today.


Just got off the phone with one of the local agencies and I'm booked for tomorrow, all the way to Rochester from Woking.

Later Dudes (Warburtons)

Well that's it I can only be pushed so far and today was the last straw. As I set out this morning to do a route that has been so badly changed its unreal I was planing to finish as quickly as possible and start my 2 days off. Got to one customer just a few minutes later than the stated arrival time, shop locked up can't get in front or back. No answer to the bell, waited for 10 minutes and then called the depot informing the duty Team Leader of what has happened.

As I was leaving to go to another area I told him that it won't be possible for me to return here as I'll be miles away and this customer has a habit of doing this. Later on I get a call from the Senior Team Leader and I proceed to explain what happened. He tells me that I have to go back and deliver but that means all others will be late. He then tells me that I have to go back at the end of the shift and I told him if I have the time I'll do it. As we don't get any overtime anything after 12:30 is my time.

I carry on with the route and get back to the depot at around 12:15, unload and the offending delivery note is taken upstairs. Then I'm told to go and see the Depot Manager. He then proceeds to read me the riot act and tells me that my contract states that I have to be 'Flexible' and tells me to go and redeliver or he'll do an investigation. As other things have been brewing within me and after making the required notifications of the issues and nothing being done about them I decided there and then on the action plan.

'You've got my official weeks notice as of Now' I told him. He didn't even bat an eye lit, all he said can you put it in writing. Went home and typed up a letter, asked for Pay in Lieu but don't know if they will honour it. So if nothing is heard after my 2 days off I'll be back to work to work my notice. He might be a Class1 prat but I'll do thing properly.

I know in this economic climate it wasn't the smartest thing to do but when you work for a manager that doesn't care about his drivers then he deserves what's coming to him. Have to point out that my Team Leader is very good and I'll be sorry to leave that team.

For a Company that claims to be a Family Company all this Depot Manager is interested is the bread and he couldn't give a monkeys about the drivers.


Down in Bournemouth & Poole this morning, after doing all my drops I had the unfortunate time out trouble. Had to stop for a break, so driving down the dual carriageways looking for a likely spot I spied a road that looked just right. No restrictions on parking, no yellow lines of any kind anywhere to be seen. Reversed into the road making sure that I wasn't blocking any driveways and stopped. Had a snack and then this gent comes along in his van and proceeds to give me the what for for parking on this road.

You're blocking the road, you shouldn't be here, you're over the half way on the road. After he finished I politely pointed out to him that there were no restrictions of any kind and I can park here. However I'll be gone in 10 minutes so I don't see any problem. Away he goes and comes out with his camera, few pictures were taken, so I decided to do the same just in case to show that there were no parking restrictions. Then I drove away.


Yesterday when I happened to be passing through Farnham I had to drop off some stuff at Sainsburys, so when you go round the one way circuit and turn at the lights you have to position the lorry and reverse into the yard. At the time (7am) there was very little traffic so I did the usual thing, four ways on and position the lorry at an angle and check behind and start to reverse.

Just as I was about to start reversing Some prat decided that they couldn't be bothered to wait for a minute or so and sneaked in between me and the wall. Good job I was just beginning to get moving and after slamming on the brakes I had a few choice words in my mind. If I'd have caught the pillock I'd have told him what I think of their driving.

Makes you think how some people are just so impatient and have a serious wish to die under a lorry. I don't mind them dying but don't do it under my lorry and don't take me with you. I have plans for the future and they don't include idiots being caught under the wheels of a lorry that I'm driving.


Hot Work & Brain of Britain Planning

This morning whilst driving in the pouring rain I just happened to glance down to the temperature sensor on the lorry. This thing is supposed to measure the outside Air temperature. Today must have been a phenomenally hot day, got a feeling that we must have had one of those flash heat waves. The temperature outside the lorry showed an amazing 80.5oC. Towards the end of the journey it went up to 90oC. Me thinks the gauge has had a bad day and went a bit ballistic.

The other bit of my saga is a bit of a beef on the planing of this route that I had he misfortune of doing today. Bear in mind that it is a local route and it goes round Farnborough, Fleet, Farnham & Aldreshot, it usually has 24 drops. Some bright spark in the office upstairs decided to add another 2 drops to the route, now this is the good one. The planning boffins have added the first drop in Hook, which is in a different direction and about 20-25 minutes one way. Then at the end when you have done all the drops and are in Aldershot the final drop is in Odiham. So you're going down the same motorway twice and running yourself ragged to get it all done and they think its OK, no problem as GU14 and RG29 postcodes are supposed to be net to each other. At least so it looks on their planning maps. A contestant for the title of 'Brain of Britain'.


What a miserable day to do deliveries in. Had a shed load of them as this route is ever expanding since the management don't understand the terminology of 'Local'. They keep adding drops onto it and it grows like a bad spot. Not so sure it should be done by one driver and voiced my concerns yet again, but as usual nothing will be done about it. All they are concerned is that the product gets delivered and when you look on the schedule it doesn't even allow for breaks.

Apparently they add a 'minute' here and there so they you can take a break but when you look at the delivery times and the driving in between I just can't see where a break can be taken. So I just take them when needed and if the stuff is late then too bad.

This can't go on for ever it has to give one day and when a mass walk out happens then possibly the management will wake up. All they are doing right now is thinking up new ways to pester us and make our jobs more difficult.



Having driven on the road again this morning I noticed that there seems to be quite a lot of accidents as of late. Fortunately or not all seem to be cars and nothing to do with any lorries.

On the other hand yesterday when driving back around Amesbury I spied an old hand (I presume) driving a Nolan Transport Artic. The problem was with his trailer, the back side curtain was open on both sides and the back door was leaning back at a dangerous angle. Surely he/she must have checked this before setting off. Looks a bit slap dash to me.


Driving today through Wilton, Wilts I had to do a slight about turn as I went the wrong way. Bear in mind that I'm in a 7.5T wagon so I decide to pull in to a side road and then when there's room reverse into the road and wait for traffic to clear before turning right. I suppose I could have waited till the cows came home so I took the decision to wait till it was clear on the right side and then pull out a bit to see if some kind soul would let me go. One lady took pity on me and slowed down so that I could go, as I'm 3/4 of the way over a 'wide boy' comes flying up the road (A36), so I accelerate and straighten out. He then proceeds to give me the finger and looks less than happy as I must have slowed him down by about 1 mile from his warp speed. Didn't cause any traffic jams and didn't impede anyone except this one plonker, so what was his problem. I suppose he was a micros of a second slower in getting wherever he was going.

Have to admit that some of the so called roads around Tisbury are what you might call a cutting in the wood. The biggest annoyance of the whole trip was having to turn around and go back 7 miles when I was just half a mile from destination. The cause, a 9ft 9in bridge, the wagon 11ft 3in.