Royal Mail all week

Drove to PRDC and back to United Airlines 3 times, empty there and back.

All the way to Dartford with half a trailer's worth of mail, at least I had a Volvo this time so it made driving a pleasure.

Wednesday & Thursday
Same as monday but this time i had mail to bring back, loads of RSC's full of mail. The good thing about this is that a bay has sort of been reserved on United and when you turn up and there is no one there then it's straight on the bay and then go and book in. This really saves a hell of a lot of time waiting around.

Not bad job this, 4 on 4 off so now for a relaxing few days off  to get my 'strength' back.
Been booked for this till Christmas.


Royal Mail this week, looks like its the same duty all week. Not that I mind, going to Mount Pleasant and then to United Airlines a few times each day isn't that bad. Today instead of a DAF of which there seems to be a shortage of I had a Merc Axor, first time I drove a Merc and a manual one since passing my Class1 test. To be honest its not bad, comfy, loads of space, good dashboard layout and even a comfy bed. Surpassingly the gearbox was a straight 8, was expecting a split shift but a straight 8 is even better. Drove very nicely as well, quick off the mark and plenty of power to pull the trailer.


Now this is something that I'm never going to do, ever again. Was asked to do a job for this company and only 7 drops starting in Banbury, Oxford, Huntington, etc. Got in this morning and the first thing I had to do was to fill up the lorry on my way to the first drop. Getting to Banbury and the first 2 drops, no problem. However Oxford was another kettle of fish.

Having an 18T lorry in a town so full of bikes and tiny streets along with masses of 7.5T restrictions is no fun. Apparently the other delivery driver is happy to break restrictions but I'm not. Specially when there are hundreds of cameras pointing at all the restrictions and are just waiting to snap you up.

The lorry (DAF) was a bit old as well with a splitter gearbox, which made driving in a busy town extremely interesting.

Called the agency and explained my predicament and was told that 'the client will absorb this'. I doubt it as breaking restrictions is something that will come back to the driver and after all its my license and lively hood and I don’t plan to have anything go wrong with that.

Never again will I do a job like this


I've come to a conclusion that I hate those big silver boxes that fit in the aircraft’s cargo hold, moved shedloads f them today. The biggest problem is the usual wait when you get to the cargo-handling site, book in, get a number and sit and wait for an eternity.
Crawley at 4pm, this is what nightmares are made of, or so I thought. Surprisingly enough it didn't take that long to get there as I left Bracknell @15:00. Had two deliveries to Pizza shops of all the things. Somewhere before this I swore that I'd never do hand ball again and guess what. Here I am doing it again, be fair I didn't know about this till I arrived at the clients site, if I did i wouldn't have done it. All deliveries are to be paid before delivery, now this is fun, informing the shops that I need a cheque or cash for the full amount before I can deliver their goods.

Two of the places were OK but one was a bit adamant to part with his money, but soon saw the error of his ways. Dropped the two in Crawley and had serious visions of sitting on the M23 & M25 for hours as it was getting a bit late. Low and behold hardly any traffic, got to Slough in record time.

Delivering in the high street I realised that I should claim danger money, it seems that Algeria beat Egypt last night in a football match and the Algerians were all going hell for leather celebrating this. Fireworks going off everywhere, car horns tooting and of course the usual singing that has to be done on such occasion. Well that made an eventful end to a Wednesday evening.


City Airport for the first time, London certainly looks different in the early hours of the morning. Coming back was also strangely quick, I was expecting to be stuck for hours. Have to admit that it was the first time that I enjoyed driving through London in a Lorry, probably because no bugger was about at 05:30 in the morning.

A quick lorry change and off I go with an artic to Cathay Pacific at Heathrow with a trailer load of cages, loads of mail for the Far East, interesting place to get into, almost made reversing into the bay in one go. Unfortunately had to take a few shunts, never mind better luck next time.

Getting quite used to trunking for Royal Mail.


Down to Dartford today, as predicted the weather was abysmal on the way there, can't understand why the lorry is limited to 52mph. Surely this can cause a hazard as other lorries and cars constantly keep passing and jockeying for position. Having stuck it on cruse I was OK on uphill as I could overtake a lorry or two but downhill or flat they all went past me. That last turn off before the Dartford Toll is something else, whoever sequenced those lights need shooting, one green and the rest on red, queues and cars, lorries going all over the place. Took about 10 minutes to get through one traffic light. Amazingly when I arrived I only had to wait for 1.5 hours to be loaded and then back on the M25 and M4 to the depot, took a lot less time to get back then I thought.


Aviation Security

Well Now I'm trained, did the course yesterday and most of the stuff is comon sense. Lot of it came back from the training in the Army and the bits that I didn't know came in very handy. Now I'm waiting for the certificate and a proper laminated Id.


Agencies & Money

What's with some of these agencies out there. I worked for one for 3 weeks and every week there's been a cock up with my pay, somehow they've always managed to short change me and pay me for less hours than I've worked. I keep a spreadsheet of all my hours and sent them copies a number of times and promises are made to correct it but nothing happens. Frankly I'm getting sick and tired of this and unless it's all corrected today I won't work for them again, just can't trust the payroll dept to get it right.

Norbert yet again

Nice and easy run to Cannock should be back in a few hours. Think again, the weather was atrocious and the traffic on the M40, M42 & M6 just as bad. It took me almost 4 hours to get there, loaded up with 2 pallets of frozen and then back home. Quick stop at a service station for my well-earned 45-minute break and would you believe it the traffic had cleared up. Casual drive home @52mph and back to the depot at around 22:40. When told how much I had brought back the duty chappie couldn't believe it as an Artic just came down and there was room in the trailer for my '2 pallets'. Oh well what could I say, not a lot, obviously someone either didn't plan correctly or couldn't calculate the volume of each lorry.


Norbert Dentressangle - M&S

Amazing what you can get on to an 18T lorry, 4 pallets of frozen shrimp and other assorted seafood for one drop. Then on to M&S in Mill Hill to drop 14 cages of frozen. Had almost the same area as yesterday. Initial drop was in SE16 and had to get there, going through London is not something that I cherish. The M4 wasn't too bad except on the elevated someone breakdown in the outside lane and as usual other people were venting theis spleen on them. Not sure but possibly broke a rule as I had to go through a bus entrance to a road since my lane wasn't wide enough. I recon London needs to be renamed Speed Camera City, they are all over the shop, some prat places them on a downhill slope hoping to catch anyone who dares to go over by a few miles.


Wonders will never cease, today for a change I actually did some driving. The initial trip was to Maidstone to deliver some Mail and then on to SE18 to collect some more mail. Now I know why I hate IVECO lorries. Crap gearbox and not the best lorry to drive through London. The usual London traffic made its appearance, it took me 3 hours to get from SE18 to Slough, once on the M4 no problem. Getting to the M4 was a problem. Along the way from Maidstone I stopped at this American theme Diner, bloody hell what prices. Bacon & Egg Muffin was 3 quid, one slice of bacon, one egg and the muffin. Not bad profit margins and priced at £1 per item, must remind myself Never to stop there again.


Off the Wall

As I was watching the Remembrance Day services yesterday I couldn't help but get very angry as I saw the idiot that caused the deaths of our soldiers standing behind the leaders of the main parties. Old Tone was there, bold as brass and what I want to know is who invited him and how does he have the gal to show his face after causing this senseless 'War'. Being an ex squaddie I support out boys over there but I do not believe we should be there. If the Afganis want to shoot each other, fair play, give them the rifles and let them get on with it.

They are a bunch of unreliable, scheming and deceitful people who don't give a to## for anything and anyone, so why should our boys die for them. Gordon couldn't even get the name of one of the boys who died right when sending a letter to his family. The nonsense from Downing street is pitiable.

Lets get our boys out of there before many more loose their lives for a senseless cause.

May the ones who already paid the Supreme Sacrifice Rest in Peace.

Deja Vu

Do you ever get that feeling that you've done this before. Went to TNT this morning, clocked on and had a look on the schedule as to what I'm supposed to do. It said Greenford but the lorry number was crossed out. The transport chappie told me to sit in the canteen and someone will let me know where I’m going ASAP. Sat there for 2 hours chatting to other drivers and watched them go and jump in their lorries and drive away. Then there were 3 of us left, one of the (I assume) managers comes in and informs us of 'there's been an overbooking' you'll be paid for the full day. That was it, went home.


Last night on Night Shift

Yesterday was my official last night, the usual scenario, sat around till midnight and did absolutely bugger all. One of the other spare drivers went and did a job but us others (7 in all) sat and chewed the fat. No news from the agency if I'm needed for the Royal Mail next week. Monday I'm off to TNT for a day.


Finally some driving work, yesterday I went down to Bristol. Cracking weather for a longish drive. Consolation of having a Volvo FM Euro 5 to drive, excellent unit to have on a wet and miserable night. All the mod cons even included air con. Took a trailer load to a depot literally just beside the Severn Bridge, for a moment I thought that I'd have to pay the toll. Nice and new depot with loads f room to turn and get on the bay. Took about 1.5 hours to get there and then the usual unload during which all the temp staff decided that as it was 10pm they would go home. This left me and 2 security staff to unload. Quick stop at a rest stop for a break and home, cracking prices in some of these rest stops. £1.99 for a cup of tea, was thinking about a full English till I saw the prices, good job I had some sarnies.


Isn't that nice, have an email telling me that the BACS file was corrupted and no pay till Monday unless you're with the likes of Ducas, etc. Which I'm with but the agency hasn't managed to inform them yet. Surely they should have checked the file and resent it the same day it was found to be corrupted. So far the last 2 weeks have been fruitful, first week they underpay me and now this, don't get the warm and fuzzy feeling about the agency.
Last night was another night of sitting around, don't get me wrong I don't mind getting paid for doing nothing but its so bloody booring. Do't know if I can do this again next week, if the agency wants me to go back to Royal Mail then its going to have to be days only. Now that the threat of strikes over Christmas has been lifted I haven't got a clue how it will effect the agency drivers, surely there has to be a 'slight' drop in requirements but you never know.



Got my digfob from Tachodisc yesterday, pretty usefull thing to have. Now I can see what my hours are and if I'm taking all the correct breaks etc. Well worth the price of £35.
Last night was Day 2 of the Night Shift and actually I did something. Not much though, went to Swiss Port to collect loads of yorks(Dollies) and cages. Roughly about 2 hours work which included loading them on to the lorry. Then the 'extremely' long drive back to Langley. Park up and home by 11pm.


My first night shift and boy what a surprise it was. Signed in and sat down to wait for a assignment. One came up pretty quickly, couple up a trailer and unit and leave it on the bay. That took all of 10 minutes and then that was it for the whole night. Sat in the waiting area, had some coffee, went to the canteen and ate my sarnies. 21:30 we were asked to sign out and went home at 22:00. Fair play got paid till 01:00 but its boring just siting around doing nothing, we'll se what tonight brings.


The Night Shift

Tomorrow night is the first time I'm planing to have a go and I'll have to make a conscructive decission after this week if I want to do more night work or not.