This is a story that was told to me by one of my buddies that is an old timer. It actually happened to him yesterday while he was making a delivery. So there is no confusion this didn’t happen to me, however I am going to tell the story in 1st person so that I don’t have to use quotations and all that fun. So here it goes.
I had just finished up a 6 am unload at the Walmart D.C. in Grantsville, Utah. It took them just over 4 hours to unload the 18 or so pallets of water I had on my truck. The wind had picked up this morning and was blowing pretty well. It even broke the chain holding my swing door open! I figured that I had seen it all during my 26 years of driving….. So I thought…. As I rounded the corner and hit the straight away I was rolling up to the gate to check out of the D.C. Right before I got next to the stop sign an unbelievably strong gust of wind picked up the driver’s side of my truck and trailer and proceeded to fling me over. As my mind is going a million miles an hour and I’m holding on to anything that seems stable. I soon realize that I hadn’t tipped completely over?!?!? As I regained my nerves I soon understood that I was sitting at a 45 degree angle. I hadn’t tipped over, but I was far from okay in this position. My first thought was that I am at a balancing point and that I better not get out or move at all.
Now, I am sitting there up in the air staring at the guards at the gate and they are staring right back in sheer terror. I decided it’s probably best to get a wrecker out as fast as possible to get me set back over. I was really curious what in the heck was holding me at this 45 degree angle. Before I could get my phone out I felt the truck move. And as soon as it started it was over. The wind had miraculously blown me back onto my tires. I felt like the wind was being really polite for having just tried to blow me over. So I figured this would be a good time to do a walk around and survey the damage. Immediately when I got out of the cab, it almost ripped my door off. And it also knocked my lucky hat off and blew it 200 yards across the field. I figured it was just a hat after all and compared to what had just happened I could care less if my hat was gone. So as I’m doing my walk around I noticed that there was a few holes in my trailer that were scraped with yellow paint. I glanced over and saw that what had been holding me up with those annoying yellow four foot concrete poles. Today though, I must say they weren’t annoying me one bit.
Once I found everything to be satisfactory compared to what had just occurred I pulled onto the side street and began to fill out the accident report. I contacted my company and sent in the required messages. Just before I get ready to leave I remembered that I better take some pictures for the accident people and for posterity. As I went around and took pictures I couldn’t help but notice that the wind had blown my lucky hat back to me. I found it sitting down by the passenger side steer tire. So as I mentioned before, this was just about the most polite gust of wind I’ve ever met. And it just goes to show that we as truck drivers have no control over the weather. And sometimes stuff just happens. It is the experiences and how you deal with them that makes you a better driver.