A touch uneasy

Potted history - HGV II 30 years ago, 2 long periods of employment, very different jobs, moved abroad (not driving work), moved back, did agency for a while. Then took what seemed the best option for me at the time for another long employment stint, got fed up so took my C+E (very straightforward as it was W&D which I’d done for several years in the 2nd job), handed in my notice but allowed myself to be talked out of it with the promise of some class 1 chances which never materialised, life circumstances changed to an extent that the job/ hours would quickly become impossible for me so resigned.

Back to the same agency, main placement over the past 6 months has been with a firm that runs both class 1 & 2 vehicles, I was only offered class 2 but happy enough with that, a few too many quiet weeks after Xmas so told the agency I was considering signing up with a 2nd agency so they gave the main firm a push to try me on artics. Had a couple of days training then an assessment then last week was let loose by myself for a couple of days. All fine and with the knowledge that I’m driving between the firm’s sites where there’d always be someone there that I was familiar with to turn to for advice if needed.

I was offered container work for today but turned it down, too many unknowns involved for me with the total of 5 whole days artic experience.

For tomorrow I’ve again been offered class 1 work, but this time with a firm I’ve done a fair bit of class 2 for, both in this run on agency work and in the first stint 8 years ago, I know the job, I know the people and I’ll probably have been to the 2 or 3 customers’ sites previously, so I accepted. The uneasiness comes from knowing that some of these places could be incredibly tight to manoeuvre in and can tricky enough with a 6 wheeler but I’ve got enough experience behind me to know what I can and can’t do with a rigid, I don’t have that take a look and weigh up the best way to manage it insight with the artic. Just have to take it steady I guess.

Chill, take your time and enjoy.

You know the score, if you are not sure get out and have a look. Take your time and all will be well.

jump and wing it.youl never know till you try…if its tight,get someone face to face and ask them to guide you…worst case scenario if your agency is if you wreck it and dont get asked back,then work for another agency.
just do it,and then tomorrow,wonder why you were flapping .you wont know till you try…just try this wee chant when your reversing into someones yard,ive always found it helps to keep me calm …icandothisicandothisicandothisholychristivejustwreckedthefrontofthatlorryicandothisicandothisstickyourjobupyourassivejustpulled the side out of the trailernowicandothisicandothis…works for me…it def wont be as bad as you think once yourbums in the seat and you commit yourself. :smiley:

Hi Vid
I was in a similar situation. I passed c+e 23 years ago and never ever went in an artic again after that, until 4 week ago. I had driven for 5 year tho after passing my test on a builders wagon and towed a few trailers. I had 2 days training driving and reversing. Struggled with the reversing a bit had to shunt a few times but always managed to back onto the bays. Got let loose on my own after these two days. Proper panicking but absolutely no need too. My first reverse was a dog but I just asked another driver to watch me in which he did. I shunted a few times but got there. The driver what helped me in was glad to help and so have everyone else I’ve spoken too. Only 2 what have refused to help were 2 from the company I was working for. Like others have said enjoy. I did one day one that week because I only do casual, but the following week did 5 days tramping. Not bad for someone who as never been on an artic. If I can do it you certainly can. Top tips I’ve had have been. If unsure when reversing get out and have a look doesn’t matter how many times you have too. Reverse back slow. Don’t worry about other drivers taking the ■■■■ because some will, and don’t be afraid to ask another driver for help. Worked for me. Good luck tomorrow and just take your time and don’t panic.

Didn’t have a good start to the day, the trailer has sideboards that were down, used to moving the rigids around with them down and didn’t give a thought to just moving the vehicle when asked to the loading area, moved maybe 10 feet on full lock, it wasn’t pretty!

Had to drop the trailer to move the unit forward to free the side jammed in the top of the mudguard, sides up, reconnect and then move to the loading area. It was loaded then moved it out of the way until a manager came to assess the damage which wasn’t as bad as it first looked, would have totally understood them telling me to clear off but as it was all still roadworthy and a genuine mistake, carry on with the run.

First place I had to go to was interesting, had to drive in as it wasn’t possible to turn, the reverse out involved getting the back of the trailer between parked vehicles at an angle, got a bit close to one but managed it fine. Second place was familiar to me, sufficient room to turn with a couple of shunts, not keen on the roads getting there and out but no dramas.

Back to the yard, TM was very good about it all. Dropped the trailer and off to pick up another that had been VORed for a few days at another customer’s site, trailer brake wasn’t on so rather than a couple of tugs to make sure I’d got it, it moved freely :unamused:

Good fun when I got back to the yard trying to find somewhere to park, the ideal place wasn’t possible due to them being shut for Easter so all the rigids had to move.

Back in on Tuesday, will have to drop the trailer somewhere else so as I can get to the first one that’s now reversed up against, but not somewhere too difficult as I have to swap over later in the day.

thats you christened,tues will be a doddle,crack on drive… :slight_smile: