Saved by GPS?
This week I received a significant save from my GPS. I had a load going to Newark, OH from Green Bay, WI. It is a semi regular load that I have done about 10 times. The shipper is about 10 miles from our terminal. The loading appointment was for 08:00. I had gotten and checked out a wagon the night before. I had time to go to the gym and get some exercise before getting to the terminal at 07:00 and doing a routine pre trip and still get to the shipper by 08:00 for my live load.
This customer is fairly quick and is usually done in 45 minutes to an hour. There is a gas station just down the street. That easily gives me a half hour to walk down to the gas station and get my coffee. It usually isn't long after that when the light turns green and I can get my paperwork and leave. This morning that was right around 09:00. I can usually get to my customer in Newark with 15-30 minutes to spare on my ELD. Nice thing is that my morning appointment in Newark lets me get a run in before they start unloading. There is a trail less than a mile from the customer.
My goal is always to get out of Green Bay by 10:00. Getting out by 09:00 assures me that I will get through Chicago before the afternoon rush. If all goes well Illinois will be in my rear view by 13:30. This day was no different. My GPS likes to route me down I65 towards Indianapolis and over. Truth is that it is a coin flip to me to go through Indianapolis or Fort Wayne.
This particular day my GPS was showing a 35 minute delay on I65 somewhaere south of Lowell, IN. I flipped over from Mark Willis to WBBM AM 780 to see if they would say what was up. This station has traffic updates on the 8s. They reported icy roads and jacknifed semis between the 240 and the 215 mile marker. I headed across US 30.
Pulled into the consignee with about 14 minutes left on my 11. Got the truck parked and checked out before drinking my chamomile tea and going to bed. If it had gotten really bad on I65, I would have had to park before I got to Columbus and drive 50 miles to the customer - thus starting my 14 hour clock a lot earlier than I would have liked. That would mean that I might be lucky to get back through Chicago the next day. As it turned out, I easily cleared Milwaukee.
It was only a few weeks ago that I put my GPS on the shelf to get back "in touch" with old school me. While, I think that was a good thing, I am happy it wasn't this week.