Friday, 11 November 2011

Bridge Leads To Troubled Waters

Bridges. The bane of bus drivers' lives (and truck drivers too). These days there are so many road signs littering the road which act as an information overload for drivers of big vehicles. It is not surprising then, that occasionally accidents happen.

Sure enough, while I was away  there was a news story about a double decker which for some reason went under a low bridge. The driver is facing dangerous driving charge.The miracle was that no one was killed, which seemed to be down to the quick wittedness of the children who realised what was about to happen and ducked.

I can't talk. 

I've driven a double decker bus into the depot doors. Not with any passengers on, I might add. But the doors were bent sideways and the bus  needed some new paint, but luckily the top window did not break and was marked with multiple scratches. On another occasion I scraped some narrow gates with such force that the large stone ball moved and at one moment looked as if it was about to detach itself fully from the gates.

Double deckers are hard to drive. There are many things to think about.

My contretemps with stationary objects was not confined to buses. Once whilst driving a truck in Poland, disaster struck. It was in the centre of Torun, while following another much more experienced truck driver, thaat we both hit the railway bridge and put large holes into the top of our trailers.

Strange, we thought. We had looked at the height restriction sign and were not expecting any problems. All hell broke loose as we were surrounded by Polish Policemen and the main North-South highway was shut whilst we were interrogated. It turned out not to be our fault. The road had recently been tarmac-ed, meaning the height had lowered, but no one had thought of changing the sign.

It was an expensive morning. The fine was several thousand zloty. Rough justice, I suppose.


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