This I Believe

Robert - Jupiter, Florida
Entered on January 18, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

Always Respect the Big Rigs

A personal philosophy that I’ve stood by since I started driving is this: “Always respect the big rigs.” Those truckers run up and down the highways of America at all hours of the day. I think they have a difficult but very necessary job and if we could all just help them out a little bit, I’m sure they would appreciate it.

I live in West Palm Beach so I travel a lot up I-95 from my home to school here in Orlando. After I pass Ft. Pierce it goes from three lanes down to two which makes driving a bit more difficult because people like to cruise in the passing lane. If I get frustrated by this I can only imagine what the truckers feel like. So whenever I see a blinker from one of those big rigs go on, I’ll flash my lights and let them over.

My older sister follows the same philosophy that I have. As a matter of fact, one day when we were driving together it really helped us out. We were both heading up to Georgia and for some reason traffic was really backed up. We were chugging along at a measly 15mph. There was this truck next to us and he was trying to weave in and out of traffic so we let him get in front of us. This happened a few times until finally we came to a dead stop. That same trucker happened to be next to us and he rolled down his window and yelled through our sun roof, “If y’all want to get out of this traffic, just follow me.” We were a little skeptical a first but decided to trust that he was just a nice guy returning the favor. We followed him onto the shoulder and then a couple hundred feet away was an exit. There were several big rigs doing this so they must have known something we regular people didn’t. We drove for about 20 minutes on this backwoods highway surrounded by trucks. Then in the distance we saw a sign for I-95. After we got back on there highway, there was no traffic and we were several exits ahead of where we started. It was very cool of that guy to do that for us. They must have found out where the accident was and plotted an alternate route.

I’ll never forget that day, as it just reassured my philosophy that you should always respect truckers. I had always done it because it was the right thing to do and because frankly they’re a lot bigger than my little car, I never expected to be rewarded for being nice on the road. Maybe if everyone was a little more courteous to their fellow driver this kind of stuff would happen more often.