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Ice Road Trucking e-book preview 6 takes a look at “Attitude” and how far a bad one carries you in your day to day business.
“A bad attitude is like a flat tire,
you can’t go anywhere until you change it.”
The last minute check was really overkill. (Or was it?). I’d already pre-tripped my equipment 3 or 4 times in the short time I was there, but sometimes shit just happens, and it did. For those of you not familiar with trucking, a pre-trip inspection of your equipment has to be done a minimum of once per day.
This wouldn’t be the first tire issue I had over the season. It was really just typical trucking industry stuff and I was used to it. (Get it fixed and move on.)
I couldn’t help but notice some of the drivers with poor attitudes already and the season had barely started. I’d only been in the dispatch office a few times and witnessed a few heated discussions with drivers. Fighting with a dispatcher will get you nowhere fast in the trucking industry.
Patience is not about your ability to wait. It’s really about the control you have over your attitude while you’re waiting. By picking the right “P” word, it usually determines the outcome of your current treatment. Are you going to be “Pissed” or “Polite”? Amazingly enough, it also determines how long people make you wait the next time a possible delay comes up.
So here I was with a tee time for 17:40 on my first trip with a tire on my truck almost flat. I called my boss in the hopes that I could get it fixed right away. The tire shop was across the street and only about two blocks away, but they had no room to accommodate a truck and trailer. This meant dropping the trailer I was pinned up to. This created another issue for me. According to the Explosives Act, you can’t unhook from a load of explosives and leave it unattended. Loads like this are required by law to be monitored 24/7. (Hence the reason that team drivers brought the load to Yellowknife.)
This wasn’t going to be a big deal or a difficult task, but I was running out of time. After clearing it first with the safety department, I dropped the trailer and bobtailed over to the tire shop. The tire shop guy was pretty quick getting at it, but time ran out for me. I knew I wasn’t going to make it back to dispatch inside my 90 minute window, so I called dispatch on the VHF radio to let them know I needed to be pulled from my tee time. (I made sure I picked the right “P” word.) They were really good about the situation and told me to let them know when I was ready to go again. If I’d chosen the other p word, it would have carried with me the whole season and wouldn’t have been treated as well as I was.
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