Truck driver Andy Chandler captured this dangerous stunt by a driver on SR-14 EB near Camas on Wednesday. Note: the timestamp on the video is incorrect. Video courtesy Andy Chandler
The trucker who captured the video spoke exclusively to Clark County Today
CAMAS — (NOTE: The original version of this story incorrectly labeled the direction as Westbound. The driver’s were actually heading east on SR-14. We regret the error.)
In 11 years driving trucks, Andy Chandler says he’s only ever seen one stunt crazier than the one that happened Wednesday on SR-14 eastbound heading into Camas.
Chandler’s dash cam captured the moment a blue Honda, apparently impatient waiting behind another log truck up ahead, decided to squeeze between it and another vehicle. Lane-splitting isn’t even legal for motorcycle drivers in Washington state, let alone full-sized vehicles, but this driver didn’t seem to care. Chandler says he immediately contacted his fellow truck driver over their CB Radio.
“We were just absolutely flabbergasted that that even happened,” he told Clark County Today in an exclusive interview. “He saw the car swerve over to the right, and then he lost sight of him. The car went into his blind spot and he had no idea that it was there. He’s just really happy that nothing happened and there wasn’t a big accident.”
He says they immediately contacted Washington State Patrol, but the Honda had gotten off the highway a few miles after the dangerous stunt.
Chandler says he didn’t post the video to shame the other driver, just as a warning to his friends and family about what truck drivers face on the road. But it’s since made the rounds of social media groups and even local TV news.
One thing that’s irked him is how many of the people commenting on the video are putting at least some of the blame on the truck driver for being in the left lane.
“They don’t know the facts,” Chandler says. “They don’t know what the truck was doing, how fast he was going, or anything like that. On a two-lane highway, that left lane is not just for vehicle traffic.”
Chandler says his colleague had gotten over to allow people to merge from 192nd Avenue, and had been unable to move back to the left. The left lane ended a short ways ahead, so he made the decision to stay in the right lane until then. State law does mandate that trucks over 10,000 pounds aren’t allowed in the far left lane of a three-lane highway in most situations, but can use the left land of a two-lane highway to pass. Chandler says state troopers watched the video and confirmed the log truck was not in violation of any laws.
In this case, Chandler says he just hopes people who see the video learn a few lessons:
“We have blind spots,” he says. “If you get too near us, and you’re behind us, we can’t see you. When you’re on the left-hand side, we can see you pretty well. But if you’re on the right-hand side of our trucks, I can’t see you unless you’re way back there, or ahead of me.
“Yeah we’re big, we’re slow, we take a little extra time to pass people,” he adds, “but if you just have a little bit of patience, give us a little time, we’ll get out of your way.”