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Travels of a Trucker Running from a Trucker

August 6, 2012

It was a typical night. Weather was good, sky was clear and it was nighttime. I was running along the Coquihalla about 1am making my way back to New Westminster when I heard it on the radio. “Anyone have a copy around Larson Hill?” I grabbed my mike and replied I was on Larson Hillat that moment. A few seconds later a voice comes over and says “Can you watch for an old beat up 4 door Honda and get the licence plate number?He’s running like an ass with his high beams on doing about 140. They threw a beer bottle or something at my windshield and it smells like beer.” I replied “sure can bud, I’ll keep an eye out for them”. A few seconds later I see a car approaching at a high rate of speed cresting Larson Hill and making it’s way towards me. I figure it would be an easy licence tag. Unfortunately it wasn’t. This car sped by me doing about 140 and the licence plate was so dirty I could not make out the plate. So being the aggressive trucker I am and helping out a fellow driver I gave chase. Now you may be wondering…a chase in a truck??? Well I was light and I am not governed so I can easily reach 140 in the truck myself and that is exactly what I was doing although at the same time I was giving chase I was myself also on the radio asking for other truckers ahead to either slow them down or get the plate number. We continued along me following them at a high rate of speed and I was hanging on to their tail. The problem came when we hit Mine Creek Road with it’s little hill and it took enough oomph out of me that I began to lose them. Slowly I watched their tail lights disappear.

All was not lost for me yet. I was in radio contact with others who were easily 10 to 15km ahead who were already going down the Coquihalla summit descending into Hope. They were also on the watch for this car. I raced along hoping they may have turned out into the Brake check. With no such luck, I continued down the hill. I wasn’t worried about speed since I had a light load. My goal was to just catch the prick who would dare insult the trucking world with a beer bottle. Not only could have this had disastrous results, but it could have killed someone if they had caused this trucker to have a wreck. Onwards I went down the hill like a bat out of hell.

During my descent I had numerous drivers relay to me where they were seeing them. I was far enough ahead of the guy who it happened too to be able to relay the information back to him and he was grateful we had come together to assist him. Going down the hill into Hope is an easy thing to do for a truck. We need nothing more than gravity to reach high velocity speeds without any throttle. As I get down towards the bottom of the hill I hear that they have not passed a driver whom I was coming up fast upon according to his location. He was worried they may have turned off on one of the sideroads like Othello Road.

A few minutes later and I hear it over the radio. They have caught up to the guy who is just ahead of me and himself and a B Train driver have them blocked in behind. All that remained was for another driver to come and take the rear to catch them little pricks and truly box them in. I am racing as fast as I can go safely down the hill. I just couldn’t go any faster and I hear the bad news. They had managed to get around the trucks when a small hill made them lose pace of each other. Racing along I went I managed to catch up to the other trucks and flew by them. They were excited as was I that I had caught up to them. The car by this time had managed to slow down doing about 120 and I easily overtook the B train who had helped out earlier and flew by the car with it’s occupants. I got in front of them and started zigzagging across the highway with each zag I was putting a little brake on. The point was to keep them from passsing me while at the same time slowing everyone down. Now remember we are on the main highway 1 of Canada and here I am trying to stop all traffic. I managed to slow them down enough that another trucker who was one of the original ones to keep them slowed down pulled up alongside me. We managed a stop on the highway just past Highway 9 with 2 big trucks beside each other. I put on my Airbrakes and got out of the truck as did the other driver. I approached the car who had his high beams on me. As I neared the car I heard him gun the engine and with a squeal he burned rubber with his car towards me and then took off flying down the shoulder of the road. Incredibly he was not alone. Seems someone who was here on Vacation from Alberta decided he too wanted in on the action and followed this car’s lead. It seems I had left them enough of a gap to squeeze by and the occupant of this vehicle was taking it and leaving nothing for me to latch onto. As he goes by the only words I can manage are “Hey!!!”.

I run back to my truck and continue giving chase. Little did I know that the other driver who was with me was on the phone to the police in Chilliwack the whole time. We race along I have my Amber warning lights on, I am flashing my high beams. We rip along on the highway. I am doing an easy 135 and then I see it. Sitting atop Press Road overpass is a Ghost Car. I breathe a sigh of relief as I see him going towards the highway on ramp. I race by him and continue my chase. Up ahead I can see a marked police car behind the occupants of the Alberta Vehicle. The Ghost car goes ripping past me doing 160 easy and he gets in behind the original troublemaker. I catch up to them easily now that they know the police are behind them and the Ghost car also sees me coming up fast so not only is he giving chase he also has to block me off from passing them. I notice this and decide then to let them handle the situation. I give my lights a final couple of high beam flashes and then the cherries go off simultaneously as they make their respective traffic stops. I stop about 100 meters behind them and get out of my truck. By then a third police vehicle has shown up and as I exit my vehicle and am about to walk forward I hear over a loudspeaker “Driver come back.”

I walk back to the police cruiser and by this time the other big truck has also pulled over. As other trucks pass who were listening in and were also aware of the situation pass by they blow their airhorns in a final salute to say “Great Job” to both the police and their fellow truck drivers. We both give our accounts of what happened and await the arrival of the beer bottle receiving truck who is a fair distance behind. He finally shows up. We all can see there is no damage to his truck but we can see the stains of the liquid which by now have set on the truck’s engine cover. We can all smell the beer. About a half hour later the officer comes over and says we can leave if we so desire and we take that as our cue to take off. We ask the officer if they are drunk or the car is stolen and the response we get is that “they found some things in the car”. That was all we get. Later I hear that the driver is certainly charged with a motor vehicle infraction. With a smile on my face I head off to home knowing that I have done my good deed.

The moral of this story is that while you may certainly be able to outrun a truck, you cannot outrun the communication devices of VHF Radios or Cell Phones. And if by chance you ever get a great deal on a VHF radio and you travel consistently, I urge you to get one installed in your vehicle. You never know when you may break down and need assistance or may need help apprehending a road idiot.

Thanks for reading Travels of a Trucker.

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