Whilst illegal, he had been on the road for a shade under 14 hours without a break. His log books spinning a fairytale like yarn to anyone taking the time to inspect them. Heading north on the Bindoon Moora Road, he had his white Volvo FH16 going flat-out. The pocket road train he sped along in was currently weighing in at 89 tonnes, all carried over 11 axles, on 42 wheels. Its brute force of 610 horsepower, the flat nosed, cab over, truck, plus the two loaded ’N’ tipper trailers, was running along at 102 kilometres an hour. Multiple ‘Rally 4000’ spot lights attached to the enormous bullbar turned the darkness of the moonless night, into an artificial brilliance brighter than day. Hauling the last load of wheat for the day into town, he was to park up in the queue for the Moora grain bins once he had hit town. As he had done every day of the week so far, he was to leave the truck there overnight, and return to it at 6 o’clock the following morning, starting the process all over again. The recent rains had him heading to various farms, collecting grain from gargantuan silver silos, as opposed to picking it up from rusting field bins in paddocks, the ground being as wet as it was.
Just prior to Mogumber, a town slightly less than 35km south of the Western Australian town of Moora, and was little more than a pub and a rail siding, his phone rang. Looking at the screen, he answered it, pressing the Nokia to his ear with a laugh, and began talking animatedly to a mate who had phoned from one of the two pubs in Moora. His mate, seated at the bar of the Drovers Inn, was telling him of his exploits of the day, and his imagined exploits for later in the night regarding the 22 year old Irish lass currently behind the bar. With one hand on the wheel, the other on the phone, he kept his foot flat to the floor, looking forward to the beer he would be having in no more than three quarters of an hour.
Snaking the truck through a series of large ‘S’ bends, he moved the big truck into the centre of the road, making it easier for him to negotiate the up coming bends without losing any of his 100 odd kilometres an hour of speed. Nearing Gillingarra, a slightly lesser siding than Mogumber, he entered a left hand bend. The speeding vehicle creeping onto the wrong side of the road. Nearing the Thompson Road turn off, no more than a gravel road to his right, he took his eyes from the road to end the call. Searching his mobile phone for the ‘Off’ button, his truck moved back into the centre of the road toward the left hand side of the road he was meant to be on. Succeeding in switching the phone off, he lifted his eyes back to the road in time to see a police car heading south, and pass him from the opposite direction.
Jerking the wheel back to the left, bringing himself back to the correct side of the road, he wasn’t to discover the damage to the swinging rear trailers right hand corner until morning.
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