Mi­cro sleep a ma­jor con­cern

Sleep­ing dis­or­ders mean big dan­ger on the roads

Big Rigs - - COLUMN -

SLEEP dis­or­ders are a ma­jor prob­lem for driv­ers in the road trans­port in­dus­try and life in gen­eral.

It is well doc­u­mented that a lot of driv­ers have sleep apnoea.

How­ever it came to the at­ten­tion of Spy the other day that mi­cro naps or mi­cro sleep is also now of some con­cern.

A pro­fes­sional who works treat­ing and help­ing sleep dis­or­der suf­fer­ers told Spy she knew of a truckie who had been sus­pended from driv­ing be­cause of this.

My info is that he was no­ticed in a smoko room hav­ing a mi­cro nap which lasted just three sec­onds.

But that was enough for the com­pany to move him from driv­ing du­ties to light work in the of­fice.

Be­cause of pri­vacy laws, the lady would not iden­tify the com­pany.

But Spy un­der­stands that there is a de­vice avail­able that can be placed in the cabin of a truck which de­tects if any­body has a mi­cro nap.

If this is the case, sleep dis­or­ders has taken on a whole new mean­ing.

Off-duty road check

THE con­di­tion of our high­ways is so im­por­tant to our truckie mates and work on sec­tions cer­tainly add time to trips.

A vet­eran NSW driver who was off-duty and feel­ing bored on a Sun­day morn­ing de­cided to take a drive to check out progress on work on the new high­way around his old town of Broad­wa­ter.

“The Wool­go­olga to Bal­lina project is Aus­tralia’s largest re­gional in­fras­truc­ture project and will duplicate about 155km to four-lane di­vided road,” he told Spy in an email.

The project starts about six kilo­me­tres north of Wool­go­olga (north of Coffs Har­bour) and ends about six kilo­me­tres south of Bal­lina.

It will in­clude build­ing of 155km of four-lane di­vided road by­passes of South Grafton, Ul­marra, Wood­burn, Broad­wa­ter and Wardell and will be open to traf­fic by 2020.”

When com­plete, it will re­sult in a 13km travel distance sav­ing and a 25 minute travel time sav­ing.

Hol­ly­wood truckie

SINCE a mid­dle aged truckie had his pic­ture snapped for Big Rigs by one of our cor­re­spon­dents, he has been telling all who will lis­ten that he looks like Hol­ly­wood star Richard Gere.

This lad’s wife passed the info on to Spy like a good Agent 99 in the for­mer pop­u­lar tele­vi­sion se­ries Get Smart.

“He has been show­ing heaps of peo­ple his story in Big Rigs and now claims he is a clone of Richard Gere. Hubby reck­ons he was told that first by his hair­dresser,” she said.

Spy and the wife have stud­ied the said pic­ture care­fully and can’t see any re­sem­blance to the Hol­ly­wood heart­throb.

It has even been sug­gested that he may be hav­ing a mid life cri­sis.

In all fair­ness the would be ac­tor can re­main par­tially anony­mous. But Spy can dis­close his Chris­tian name is Andrew.

Play on words

ONE for­mer well known Vic­to­rian truckie who has be­come an oc­to­ge­nar­ian had cur­rent driv­ers pon­der­ing about whether he was telling a porkie pie (a lie) or be­ing fac­tual with a re­cent re­mark at a gath­er­ing.

“I am now at OBE and want to be recog­nised as such if you send me an email or let­ter,” he said.

A few of the mid­dle aged lads con­sulted Mr Google to get a cor­rect def­i­ni­tion of what he was talk­ing about.

One dis­cov­ered it was an “Or­der of the Bri­tish Em­pire” re­ward­ing con­tri­bu­tions to the arts and sci­ences, work with char­i­ta­ble and wel­fare or­gan­i­sa­tions.

It was es­tab­lished way back in 1917 dur­ing World War I.

The vet­eran was cross ex­am­ined about how he could pos­si­bly have won an OBE af­ter driv­ing the high­ways and by­ways all of his work­ing life.

His an­swer had them stunned and laugh­ing loudly. “It is not that. I am talk­ing about now be­ing ‘Over Bloody Eighty’ and you silly bug­gers helped me cel­e­brate,” he said.

Chain­saw sculp­tor

THERE is a truckie from Tasmania who has a unique abil­ity to craft use­ful items from old pieces of wood.

The lad car­ries a small chain­saw in his rig and if he sees any fallen tree branches or wood, he picks it up. Then when he has down time at a rest area uses the chain­saw.

“He cut an old tree part and made me a sturdy stool which I could sit on,” another truckie told Spy.

Ap­par­ently he had been em­ployed in the Tassie log­ging in­dus­try and now drives a truck around the Ap­ple Isle.

His mates have no doubt he could make a nice lit­tle ad­di­tional earner if he did it com­mer­cially.

Oc­sober re­port cards

WHEN this col­umn is pub­lished Oc­to­ber will well and truly be over and truck­ies who took part in a non-al­co­hol in­take char­ity rais­ing event will have handed in their re­port cards.

Spy spoke to at least 20 driv­ers who par­tic­i­pated in Oc­sober promis­ing to re­frain from drink­ing al­co­hol for the en­i­tre month.

A cou­ple were strug­gling mid-month to not have a drink off-duty.

One told Spy that he could not re­sist the temp­ta­tion and had a cou­ple of cold beers.

What­ever the out­come, Oc­sober is a wor­thy ini­tia­tive.

PHOTO: ISPY

CLOSER LOOK: A truckie re­cently pulled over to check out progress on the Wool­go­olga to Bal­lina high­way project.

ispy@bi­grigs.com.au

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