Ugly today: pay to park, canceled load

| March 26, 2012

I learned today that the TA East truck stop in Ontario, Calif. is beginning to charge for parking in the front lot like they do in the big lot. Learned when a security guard approached our truck and so informed me.

Diane and I woke up this morning at that truck stop. We arrived last night having deadheaded from Reno to better position ourselves for freight. That move paid off. We were dispatched early in the day on a nice load that picks up at 7:00 p.m. local time and delivers tomorrow morning.

As usual, there were a number of expediters in the front lot of this TA. With the weather being nice, they were outside their trucks and in a chatty mood. One team requested a tour of our truck, which Diane and I were happy to give — after giving the sleeper and cab a good cleaning.

The other expediters had also been approached by security regarding parking permits. They had conflicting stories to tell about what permit was required and how much money was spent to get free parking when they were here before. In the not-too-distant past, parking was free with no permits required and no strings attached. How long this new situation lasts remains to be seen.

Diane and I had purchased fuel so the money spending requirement was already met. If we were going to spend more than a day here in the future and had to pay for parking, we would leave. In our case, the money we would have spent inside would be lost to the truck stop because they provided an incentive for us to go away and there are other places to park a straight truck.

We left in mid-afternoon to avoid the rush hour and get across town to our pick up. Arriving several hours early we parked nearby to wait. Diane read and surfed the web. I studied Scrivener and worked a bit on my spreadsheet project (see Sunday’s blog), and my book.

UPDATE: We arrived at the shipper and were told that the load had canceled because the product set to ship had failed a test of some sort. We notified the agent who dispatched us on the load. It was news to him that the shipment had canceled. He said he would make some calls and get back to us. About 30 minutes later he called to say the shipper will pay to keep us on the load overnight and that the shipment will go tomorrow.

That was not ideal but OK with us so we stayed on the load. We have several favorite parking places in the Greater Los Angeles area and one was not far from the shipper. We went there to spend the night.

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