I’m sorry to have to write this, but we’re going to have to get real about Santa Claus.
I don’t mean the bit about whether he exists or not.
No sir. I’m talking about whether his reindeer and sleigh are up to safety code and if he even has a CDL or more to the point, a pilot’s license.
Also, I’m sure he has Hours of Service violations each year and flagrant violations of air pollution standards.
You don’t think flying reindeer have some pretty polluting emissions?
Come on. They’ve got to be worse than any greenhouse gases.
How much do the reindeer contribute to global warming? Why aren’t we reading about that in the newspapers, huh?
That’s not to mention that Santa is probably driving without his safety belt on. I bet he doesn’t even have electronic stability control on that thing, much less in-sleigh cameras or rear-view mirrors.
Heck. I doubt Santa has an ELD. No wonder he’s been able to get by with HOS violations for eons. What do you want to bet that some poor kid each year accidentally gets Santa’s “comic book” logs mixed in with her presents?
Come to think of it, maybe Santa wraps some gifts in his fake logs, what with the price of wrapping paper, tinsel and ribbon going up each year.
And speaking of eons, I bet that legally, Santa is too old to be driving a freight-delivery vehicle in the first place. How long has that guy been around?
I would venture to say that his body mass index is off the charts and his neck circumference is indicative of sleep apnea.
Think about it. He consumes cookies, hot chocolate, maybe even sandwiches and soda pop at EVERY SINGLE STOP.
No wonder he’s overweight. Sheesh.
And just because the reindeer are pulling the sleigh doesn’t mean it’s safe for Santa to nod off in his seat. And if he’s sleeping on the job because he has sleep apnea, you can bet the reindeer don’t keep to the prescribed route. Which means a bunch of kids are missing out.
I ask you this: Was there ever a Christmas when you were growing up that you didn’t get something you asked Santa for?
See, he was probably asleep in the sleigh while the reindeer did their own thing. They probably were making unscheduled rest and meal breaks so they could eat and take a load off.
What do reindeer eat you ask?
I looked it up and they eat leafy greens, bird eggs and “treats” like carrots and apples.
Oh, and mushrooms.
My goodness, you don’t want me to go there. Can you imagine having to hair test a herd of reindeer for magic mushrooms? Let’s not think about getting them to pee in a cup.
I’m not sure either kind of drug screening would turn up hallucinogenic mushrooms, anyway. That’s an accident waiting to happen.
And what if some of the eggnog left out for Santa is spiked? It could happen. Probably has happened.
And who’s to know if he inhales a bit of weed now and then?
He doesn’t get pulled over by troopers because even in a helicopter I don’t think they could keep up with him. Who’s ever heard of a helicopter landing safely on a roof, anyway. Doesn’t make a bit of sense. And no law enforcement department in the world has the finances to follow Santa around on Christmas night. Can you imagine the paperwork it would entail just to ask?
Yep. No doubt about it. Santa is one of the last of the lone ranger type of drivers and a safety risk if ever there was one.
And although I hate to suggest it, it might be better if he were put out-of-service.
Yeah, that would be a bummer for the whole planet, especially for the children.
But is safety the No. 1 priority or not?
Sometimes tough choices have to be made.
Wait just a minute. … Maybe that doesn’t have to happen. I mean, what if Santa could get an autonomous or a driverless sleigh? Sure, it would put the reindeer out of a job, but that would be better than placing the whole kit and caboodle OOS on Christmas Eve wouldn’t it?
I’ve ranted on about autonomous and driverless vehicles in this column many times but I may have to eat my words in this case.
Could I get some hot chocolate with that?
Be safe and God bless.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.