Winter weather has been wreaking havoc all across the United States this week. It’s no surprise when snow and ice descend on the Midwest or Northeast, but when freezing conditions are impacting the sunny, south things are getting a little weird. Trucker Brock Gadberry is no stranger to winter, he grew up on a farm in Missouri and currently lives in Nebraska. On Monday he was in the thick of winter's mess, but this time in the south.
Trucker Brock Gadberry encounters icy conditions on Highway 67 just north of Alamogordo, TX.
Gadberry tells us temperatures hovered right around 28 or 29 degrees, cold enough to freeze bridges and overpasses. He says it spit freezing rain as he drove all the way from Little Rock to Dallas. “I never really had to slow down, cruise over the bridges and keep goin’,” Gadberry said. “It’s always when they hit the brakes on the bridges.”
Gadberry pulls tankers hauling locomotive engine oil all over the country. He knows it’s important to be prepared for whatever mother nature has up her wicked sleeve, and he’s always ready with extra food, blankets and clothing. To keep himself and his equipment safe he looks to the advice of his father, a seasoned driver with 40 years experience and two million miles under his belt.
“He always told me never drive outside what you are comfortable handling,” Gadberry explained. Sometimes Gadberry will look to tools for help, like tire chains. He says he’s rare to use them, but they are always in his truck. Tire chains can help drivers keep better control in icy, snowy and slushy conditions.
U.S. Cargo Control carries two styles of snow chains. Our Glacier Chain is a lighter, more cost-effective chain that’s good to have on hand during an emergency. Our Premium Chain is more heavy duty and best for drivers who regularly use them during winter driving conditions. Some states require truckers to store chains in their rigs.
The laws vary state to state so it’s a good idea to contact the Department of Transportation, or DOT, where you are. Many of the laws can be found on the web, we even have a handy post on our blog that breakdowns chain regulation by state. Whether you use snow chains or not, it’s important to be aware and prepared. Those are two things Gadberry, a life-long trucker knows all too well. “We run all over the Midwest and sometimes we have to go, just grit my teeth and go," Gadberry said.
Do you have snowy or icy photos of your rig? Post them to our Facebook Page. Or Tweet us @USCargoControl.