S.S.S.S. and T.A.T
It's been an interesting day at work. At a nationwide customer they completely banned drivers from inside the warehouse. I used to go through the front door, smile at the secretary, walk into the warehouse, unload and wait for it to be verified and then leave. Today I put the paperwork in the back of the trailer, backed in and waited for the sidewall to be tapped - no interaction at all.
On my way back to the yard my boss sent us drivers a message of an hour long training we must complete today - via video in the truck. After September 11, the chain of custody - tightened on all loads. Everything became traceable from farm to table. We had to be fingerprinted, background checked and photographed to haul hazmat. Yes prior to Sept.11 - it was a very different world in trucking. Today's training was a combination of two things that us on the road - might be able to stop and save lives.
S.S.S.S. - See Something Say Something.
T.A.T. - Truckers Against Trafficking
When I was over the road, I was offered just about everything. It was common to have a knock on the side of truck, waking you up and having to decide - am I going to meet a 9mm? is my truck on fire? is somebody selling herself? or.... We are taught not to move - the reason being if they though the truck was empty maybe they would go away - if they broke in - at least you might be able to defend yourself. One night I was sitting in the drivers chair when a young woman knocked on my door, after I told her I wasn't interested something told me something wasn't right. After about an hour I went into the truck stop and talked to the manager - he had several drivers mention people were "working the lot". That morning I asked the current manager there if the police caught anyone. The answer was yes. One was 12 years old and the other was 13. I write this not wanting a pat on the back for being one person of several - that possibly saved two lives - but if you see something - please say something.
Headed back to Portland tomorrow. Please everyone stay safe.