Saturday, 21 June 2014


At the wheel, my thoughts immediately revert to the 1971 TV thriller Duel, starring Dennis Weaver and directed by the then relatively unknown, Steven Spielberg.  Travelling a lonely country road, Dennis Weaver is stalked by a frightening and never seen driver of a tanker truck. Mundane location! Ordinary truck! Spine chilling tension. A great nail biter!

Here I am on Brock Road heading south to Highway 407. How more innocent a drive can I make?  Yah, sure, except a giant tandem gravel truck sits a paint coat away from my rear bumper. I up my speed to 90 km from the prescribed speed of 80. Still there! Now 100. Still there! Now 110 and I am travelling at 30 km over the signed speed limit. Isn't there something about losing my car at this level over the limit? And.....he is still there!  Where are you Durham Police when I need you? An ugly apparition fills my rear view mirror.

Narrow road shoulders allow no pull-over escape and so, white knuckled, I arrive ultimately at the safety of Highway 407 as the menacing giant rig roars past, continuing down Brock Road, likely in search of his next victim.

These 18-wheel gravel-toting behemoths, in their deadly rush to arrive who-knows-where, far too frequently bully ordinary drivers on both the Bloomington Side Road and Brock Road.  I have a close friend, an excellent driver and owner of a not insignificantly-sized vehicle, who has totally abandoned driving the Bloomington.  Since when do their sheer size and weight give them the right to so blithely ignore posted speed limits and defy our provincial rules of the road?  My sense is that some of these truckers take perverse glee in terrorizing smaller vehicles.  A power thing?  Perhaps I should purchase a Sherman tank with fully functioning howitzers.  Okay, tail me now, I imagine yelling a la Arnold Schwarzenegger.  Dear Durham Police, if you can't be there, then please just deputize me.  I so wish to pull over a few of these giant bullies and charge them with dangerous driving.  Charged enough, they will get the message.

Uxbridge mayors have long unsuccessfully attempted to reduce truck traffic in the main downtown intersection of our little town. Indeed, the Town of Markham has banned trucks from travelling through their downtown core.  Unfortunately for Uxbridge, Brock Street ( not to be confused with the aforementioned Brock Road ) is a regional road and Durham regional approval to prohibit truck traffic has not been forthcoming.  Thus the occasional rumbling, diesel-smelly invasion of these massive mechanical nightmares attempting to make the sharp turn at our four corners ( Toronto St. and Brock St. ) is not unusual.

Sitting at the four corners intersection this week, I witnessed a tandem gravel truck round the corner, definitely barreling through the turn in excess of the local speed limit.  Worse, the driver had his elbow hanging out the window, hand holding a cell phone to his ear as he engaged in an animated conversation.  I almost suffered whip lash, so quickly did I attempt to turn and spot his licence plate number.  No luck!  Oh, how I wanted to chase after him!  I am incensed. This is not the first time I have witnessed a trucker in this location on his cell.  Crossing Toronto and Brock Streets on foot to shop, go to the theatre, grab a coffee or find an eatery are the elderly, children, families..... Have these truck drivers forgotten the deadly weapons they are driving?  This is a tragedy waiting to happen.  Dear Durham Police, if you cannot monitor this corner, then please just deputize me.  I will handle the problem. Give me a month.  I promise that you will no longer see truckers illegally texting or using cell phones.

This past Friday saw a tandem gravel truck roll over at Lakeridge and 47.  The big rig driver took the corner too quickly.  Imagine that!  A trucker speeding!  Was he also on his cell?  That's too close to home for me.  Come on Durham Police, please just deputize me!

No comments:

Post a Comment