October 2013 Letters

Boy Scout transportation merit badge? Yes!
I have not had a chance to check my Facebook or email account for 10 days, but when I did I saw that I missed an article about the Boy Scout transportation merit badge. I was wowed. I was just told about it yesterday while at the 2013 BSA Jamboree. Being there with the American Welding Society, I have been too busy and exhausted to get online.

You see, I haul the AWS trailer around the country, speaking to our youth. I was privileged to attend the Jamboree. The BSA has introduced the welding merit badge to encourage our kids to work hard and smart and not be afraid to get your hands dirty. (As Mike Rowe, Mr. Dirty Jobs himself who spoke to the kids at the Jamboree, says.)

I apologize; I am rambling. I have had 11 days of cold showers, after sleeping on a cot in a tent, a mile walk for a morning cup of coffee and then a three-mile hike to my trailer. But all I wanted to say is: How cool is it that there is a merit badge for transportation?

Keep up the great work you guys do. I have been a member of OOIDA for years, and maybe someday I can stop by and say hi.

Life Member MaryAnn Cupero
Abbott, Maine

Bill Hudgins, you are a treat
Many, many kudos to Land Line Columnist Bill Hudgins for the magnificent article he wrote in the July issue about hauling 5,400-pound cannons from northern New York to Boston during the winter of 1775-1776. Talk about a logistic venture in the winter covering close to 200 miles, wow! What our founders went through for liberty.

Thanks, Bill; it was a great piece of writing, a real treat.

Life Member Ed Chopay
Jamesville, N.Y.

Jon and Sassi dog: A Maine attraction
I had the pleasure of meeting Jon Osburn in Hermon, Maine, at Speedway 95. He was parked at Dysart’s Truck Stop for his radio show [segment]. At the suggestion of a Dysart’s staff member, he brought the “Spirit of the American Trucker” to the third annual Camp Capella “Touch a Truck” Fair.

The fair is a fundraiser for the camp and a chance for truck enthusiasts of all ages to touch a truck. Camp Capella provides a recreational and educational camp experience for people with disabilities in Dedham, Maine.

As a staff member at Camp Capella, it was nice to see his professionalism and dedication to representing your organization and wanting to give truck enthusiasts of all ages a chance to touch a truck and say “hello” to Sassi.

He also gave me some suggestions about where to look for trucking opportunities for drivers with a Class A license but no experience. He was well aware of the “truck driver shortage” myth and inspiring for my chances of becoming a professional truck driver someday.

Once again, I as well as the staff from Camp Capella would like to thank Sassi and him for helping us send kids and adults with disabilities to camp. It was truly a pleasure to have them participate in our event. 

Thomas C. Hudgins
Bradford, Maine

What is with these aggressive drivers?
I read constantly about all the measures taken to achieve a safer industry, while the one thing that most affects safety is conveniently overlooked. I am referring to enforcement, or more specifically the lack of. Aggressive driving is out of control, and running rampant – not only by automobile drivers, but by truck drivers as well.

I believe the time is past due to start talking about enforcement.

As a multi-axle heavy hauler (12 axles), I am usually the target of those aggressive drivers, as they are impatient with my slow progress. Often, they will ignore my pilot cars when approaching bridges or turns, and then try to become confrontational, while police look the other way.

I see people cutting off trucks, passing on the shoulder, passing in the median, slamming on brakes in front of trucks, etc., all on a daily basis, again while police look the other way.

If safety is truly such a priority, then why is enforcement of the traffic rules not adhered to? 

Perhaps it is just not politically correct to assess fines on the general motoring public for their bad behavior.

Member Gerald Huber
Owensville, Mo.

Ride Salley ride
This is a story about a little lady who has driven for almost 15 years without an accident. She has a plaque from Swift for the million miles and a diamond belt buckle and jacket. From ATA she has a gold belt buckle that says 1 million miles. And from OOIDA, a certificate of safe driving for 14 years without an accident. This is a great achievement for anyone.

Linda Salley is a senior member of OOIDA and has been my partner for many years. We’ve put 2 million miles on our truck, and it’s still delivering the goods all over the country.

She delivers the goods at night so the world can live tomorrow. She has done it all.

 Life Member Charles Thibault
Nashville, Tenn.