Roses and Razzberries – June 2019

June 2019

Terry Scruton


ROSES for WSMV, a TV station out of Nashville, Tenn., for its recent reporting on crashes involving trucks and cars. Instead of the usual “trucks are evil” style of report we usually see on these type of things, this station – and reporter Alan Frio – reported on things like the fact that trucks weigh 80,000 pounds and would take 100 yards to stop safely at 55 miles per hour. You know, actual facts.

Frio actually talked to driver Vernon Brewer – who has driven 2 million accident-free miles for UPS freight – about how many times he’s cut off by cars every day. The report also cited stats from the Tennessee Highway Patrol saying that there were 16,000 crashes involving improper lane changes in one Tennessee county over the last 10 years.

No scary trucks. No fear-mongering. No quotes from accident attorneys. Just facts. And the facts are that in most crashes involving cars and trucks, the trucks usually aren’t the ones at fault. Score one for local news getting the story straight.

RAZZBERRIES to Congress for continuing to fail to come together and create an infrastructure package. We’re more than two years into this administration, and we’ve got zero to show for it. Oh sure there have been a lot of hearings lately, but what’s come of them? Not a whole lot.

The direness of the problem was highlighted by a recent report from the American Road and Transportation Builders Association, which found that more than 47,000 bridges in the country are structurally deficient. What’s more, the rate of repair has slowed to its lowest level in five years and – at that current rate – it would take 80 years to bring all of those bridges up to snuff.

And why do you suppose that repair rate has slowed so much?

Could it be because there’s no money flowing from Washington? Could it be because Congress is so divided they can’t even agree on something as seemingly nonpartisan as an infrastructure bill? When was the last time you saw a Republican road? Or a Democratic bridge? The fact is infrastructure is something we all need. It’s something that should transcend party lines. And it’s something Congress should take action on right now, before it’s too late.

ROSES to Love’s employee Ticresha Cox, who saved the life of trucker Tommy Robinson at the Love’s Truck Stop in Union City, Okla., earlier this year. According to news reports, Robinson stopped off to get a burger, took one bite and began to choke. Cox, who was working nearby, heard him fall and saw one of the store’s displays move. She went to check on it and found a purple-faced Robinson on the floor.

Thinking quickly, Cox yelled for help and began administering the Heimlich maneuver, dislodging the errant burger from Robinson’s throat. The trucker was fine and made a full recovery. Cox had only been working for Love’s for two weeks at the time of the incident. Here’s hoping she got a raise.

ROSES to truck driver Dwayne Crawford and Arlington, Texas, police Cpl. Deric Sheriff for their work in saving the life of a teen who was preparing to jump off the Kelly Elliott Bridge on Interstate 20. It happened on March 27, when police had stopped traffic because of the teen. Cpl. Sheriff – himself a former truck driver and OOIDA member – got the idea to flag down a truck for help.

That truck happened to belong to Crawford, who maneuvered it under the bridge beneath where the teen was standing. Seconds later, the teen jumped and landed safely on Crawford’s trailer, with no major injuries. Hats off to a quick-thinking officer and a quick-acting trucker for saving the day.

RAZZBERRIES to the pro-tolling group Move CT Forward for not only promoting tolls in Connecticut but also promising that truckers will foot the bill. In an advertising campaign earlier this year, the group released a video saying that tolls are desperately needed to maintain Connecticut’s infrastructure. Apparently terrified of residents in the state thinking they might actually have to pay for their own roads, the advertisement assured the people of Connecticut that “with tolls, truckers and out-of-state drivers will pay more.”

And who is going to pay more for the goods in all of your stores when truckers start avoiding your state because of those expensive tolls? LL

Terry Scruton

Terry Scruton brought nine years of journalism experience when he joined Land Line Magazine in 2005, and that experience continues to serve him on the radio show. Terry’s must-read “Roses & Razzberries” is also a popular feature with Land Line Now listeners.