Oz's travels.

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Tanks very much.

                                                              A blast from the past.

When work shifting railway sleeper's go's quiet normally Phil an I go on to tipper work. Well work did go quiet...very quiet but thanks to Roger Freeman who runs his dads ferm of tipper's an tankers, (W R Freemans-Curdworth) we had a bash at pulling a milk tanker. We popped up to Roger's yard, just off  junction 9 of the M42 an connected to a very smart tanker. It was loaded with just a drop of raw milk........ about 28000lts of the stuff. Phil hadn't pulled one before so Roger showed him how to open the vent's. A very important thing to do!!! When a tanker is loaded or unloaded, as the milk goes in or out the air has to go in or out. There is one hell of a problem if you don't open the vents. The Tank can blow the lid off or even worse it can end up looking like a squeezed out tooth paste tube. Another thing Phil was told was to take it easy around the bends an stopping at junctions. There is a bit of movement from the milk, slopping back to front, Not as bad as side to side tho. Phil an I did feel a bit sea sick for a while. 

The first trip. We was to Southampton with some raw milk. we parked up for the night out side Vines dairy.

 We had a nice lie in due to we was booked in for 7.30am. In the morning we backed in to the yard. All Phil had to do was make sure the vents were open, they did all the rest fantastic.

After we had tipped we made our way back up north, calling in to R.Adam's yard for diesel. We was then told to take the tanker back, swop for another one that was loaded then take down to Southampton to tip in the morning. Okdoky another lie in......... Nope this time we was booked in for 4.30am...bugger! Well bugger for Phil I stayed in bed.

   Once unloaded, instead of coming back up north, we went west across to a place called Misterton near to Crewkerne in Somerset. This was to Pattemores dairy to collect a load of cream. We was there for about 4hrs 45mins getting sorted out. Not a problem to us with dvds an the Internet to keep us entertained.

                                       Patiently waiting.

It was a bit on the damp side aswell, so being snug an warm in the cab was great. It is a hard life being on the road. After we was loaded we headed back to Roger Freemans yard for another one of his drivers to take it somewhere else.

   A couple of weeks later we are back under a tanker again, this time a Load of whipped cream out of Wiseman Dairies in Droitwich near to Worcester for B V dairy in Shaftesbury.. Dorset.

                                     The Wiseman Dairy.

Being Loaded.

   A bit of a clanger at Shaftesbury, we arrived there at noon, backed in to position an waited for the bloke to come out. He came out an said " your not booked in to us until 6am tomorrow morning." Well it looks like we have to watch more dvds an this time cook up some bacon an mushroom butty's, with a couple of mugs of tea, dam its hard work. In the end we got unloaded ruffly about 3.30am, not to sure due to being asleep. We left there at 6am an headed back up north to meet another driver to swop tankers. This one was loaded for Evercrech, that's near to Shepton Mallet in Somerset. Once that job was done we headed for Westbury to load for Acton in Muppet Land (London).


Here we are parked up in Acton. The little pot next to me contains 284ml (10fl oz) of cream. Just a drop compared to 25000 lts (approx) in the tanker.   

Looking in side one of the pods on top of the tanker. Ooo look at all that lovely cream! I wonder how many scone's it would cover.... Hmmm
Phil an I had a trip up to Lockerbie to drop off one loaded tanker, bolt under another loaded tanker an bring it down droitwich. Sounds simple don't it. Going up was ok no problem there, but on our way back down..... CLANGER!!!!

The trailer was one of T P Niven Transport (Lockerbie).... not one of Roger's Freemans I will just point that out. Luckily Phil had just pulled out of Frankly services on the M5 an was building speed up when it went. He pulled on to the hard shoulder an rang Roger. The Highways Agency Traffic Officer's (The bod's in those 4x4's that patrol the motorway's) pulled up. Phil was going to slowly drive to the next junction to get off the motorway, they said no just in case the wheel brakes off. They went but left a contact number for Phil to ring when a recovery plan was sorted out.

                   Here's what had happened, the axle had broke.

Roger rang back with the plan of action, he was going to bring out two tanker lorries, one with an empty tanker to transfer the load into an one with a pump on the back to of course pump the milk. Phil rang the HATO's to tell them the plan. "We request two lanes closed off so one tanker can park along side an the other one to turn round an back up to the one that is broken down." They said "ERRRRRRR???? we will send a team out to do a risk assessment", Roger turned up with Glen an Pip.

I jumped in the cab with Pip just before we turned round on the motorway.

Next minute the HATO's did a rolling road bloke about half a mile back so Pip could turn round.

Pip an I doing a u turn on the motorway, not a thing you see everyday.

Right next job was for the HATO's to cone off the two lanes.
How about this then!! me stood on the M5 aye.
The pump was moved along side, pipes were connected an pumping commenced. We couldn't pump direct from one tank to another, it had to be pumped into the tank on the right then blown on to the tank on the left.

So that gave us time to have a cuppa tea.

Tea out the way what we gerner do about that wheel then?
Roger underneath jacking up the axle so they can put a chain round it to hold it up off the road. Notice me skid lid .....Health an Safety.. I'm no fool.......... well!!!!
Bit more Roger.
Once up a couple of chains were soon rapped round an the Jack was let down.. it held.

All done Phil drove off steadily down to junction 5 where we dropped that tanker an connected up to the one we had filled.

Well done Roger, Glen an Pip for a smooth, well transacted recovery.  


Collecting more cream, this time from Cricketer Farm Neither Stowey in Somerset. Have a close look where I am standing, It looks a bit black don't it. This is where a bit of a cream disaster happened.

A tanker (not one of Roger's) was being loaded, they did a driver swop an English one for a foreign one. Well he didn't wait for the tanker to be finished being loaded..... he drove off with the pipe still connected. It stretched across the yard an nearly to the gate until it broke. Cream shot every where. Luckily no one was hurt, but it made a right old mess.

Anyway on site is a shop n café, so while we waited for the tank to be filed, a shuffty round the shop then a full breakfast was ordered. Its a hard life aint it!

You must call in the shop if you ever on the way down the A39. From Bridgewater direction its on the right. They have a fine selection of there own cheese's an cream. Thanks to the chap who loaded us we got some cream given us......

                                 GET THE SCONES IN PHIL!

Phil an I were on our way up the A34 near to the M4 junction, we had been down an tipped a load of milk at Medina Dairy near to Farnham (Between Portsmouth and Southampton) the night before and had stopped there the night, we received a text from Roger.... Are you up yet? We had been up for about an hour, Phil rang him. Roger had got a job for us out of Basingstoke to Leicester. Ok we found the farm loaded the milk an was ready to roll. The farmer said "you might have a bit of messing around at the other end" Hummmmm that sound abit suspicious!!! He then said "here's a bit of a bonus for you in doing this job". He gave Phil £40. Well errrr ok?? lets go. We found the place in Leicester an was greeted by the production manager Kumlish Lakani. (He's Indian if you can't guess). He told us to back up to the pipe that was along the wall. Ok done, he then said "connect your pipe up" PIPE??? WHAT PIPE???? Roger don't carry pipes on his tankers due to the problems that can occur with people trying it on saying that their loads have been contaminated by dirty pipes etc...... anyway no pipe, so Kumlish an another bloke hunted around and with Phil's help an managed to Knock a pipe up out of spare parts.

                                    Have a look.

The only thing it took a long time to tip, due to he only had a very small storage container, so we had to wait for them to process the milk to keep making room for the rest...... You can see now why Phil was given £40........ Hang on!! that's a point..... where's my share? Phillllllllll!!!