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Posted: 9/30/2008 9:23:49 AM EDT
So yesterday I drove from my home in Casper, Wyoming down to Loveland Colorado.  Its about a 250 mile drive South down I-25.  I was driving a 2003 GMC Yukon XL.  I passed Chugwater Wyoming at about 11:00, checked the fuel gauge and decided that half a tank should get me into Cheyenne, 45 miles away.  

23 miles later the needle of the fuel gauge finally unstuck and dropped to E in about a second and a half.  Then the car sputtered and died.  I was out of fuel with no sign of civilization for 23 miles to the North and 22 miles to the South.  I raised my hood, hoping that some kind soul would stop and perhaps offer a ride.



I had been in and out of cellular service for the last two hours.  In that time my phone was trying desperately to find a signal, which drains the battery at a horrendous rate of speed.  I had one bar left on the battery so I went looking for my car charger.  I didn't bring it.  I don't know anyone in Cheyenne, so I dialed 411.  The operator answered and I asked her for a tow truck in Cheyenne, Wyoming.  She said to me, "Can I connect you with Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance?" I said, "Why yes you can, I didn't know Verizon offered Roadside Assistance."

So she connects me.  I spent the next 15 minutes punching in my credit card number, my phone number, the last four digits of my SSN etc. etc. etc.  Then I finally get a live person on the phone to help me. Goes like this:

Her: Thank you for calling Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance, how can I help you?
Me: Hi, I'm out of fuel on I-25 23 miles North of Cheyenne, Wyoming next to mile marker 30.  Can you send some fuel out?
Her: I can help you with that, are you in a safe place?
Me: I'm on the shoulder of I-25, I'm pretty safe.
Her: Ok, where exactly are you?
Me: .... Interstate 25 southbound, mile marker 30, 23 miles north of Cheyenne Wyoming.
(No shit, this was her next question.)
Her: Are you at home?
Me: What?  No, I'm next to I-25 in the middle of nowhere.
Her: Could you meet someone at your home?
Me: Are you serious?  Lady, I'm broken down in the middle of the prarie here!
Her: I understand sir, is there a mile marker or an exit near you?
Me: Yeah, like I said, I'm at mile marker 30.
Her: Ok, is there a town nearby?
Me: Yeah, Cheyenne is 23 miles away.
Her: Ok, what is the zip code there?
Me: How the hell would I know the zip code of Cheyenne Wyoming?
Her: Sir, I can't do anything without a zip code.  
Me: Can't you look it up somehow?
Her: Please hold.

Fifteen minutes go by, my phone is beeping its battery death rattle in my ear.

Her: Sir?  Are you still there?
Me: Yes I am, but my phone is about to die, is someone on the way?
Her: I can't find a zip code for Cheyenne.  Oh, wait, let me try this one....  

I'm on hold again.  Three minutes pass.

Her: Sir, what sort of service do you need?
Me:  I don't care, send a tow truck, or a locksmith or a taxi or anyone that will bring me fuel!
Her: ok....

My phone dies.

So I figure she's got someone on the way and I wait.  Its 12:30pm at this point in time.  I took some pictures to pass the time.







I also picked up some of the bottles and cans from the roadside, carried them a few hundred yards off the road into an empty field and had a little target practice.  

Four hours pass.  No help has arrived.  Finally, someone stops, this is the first time since I've been there.  He let me use his phone, I called my voicemail.  I had a message from the Roadside Assistance bitch that went like this;

"Sir, I was unable to find any services in Cheyenne.  Thank you for calling Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance, have a good day."

She left me to twist.  A 12 hour walk in any direction, she knew full well that I couldn't call anyone else, she just left me out there.

I then called 411 again and asked for a tow truck.  The operator said, "Can I connect you to Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance?"  I told her to go have sex with herself in a tirade of swearing that can only be described as Yosemite Sam uncensored.  It probably wasn't fair, I don't think she was really a Jewish shemale.

One hour later Doug's Towing from Cheyenne was there, he collected $150 and I was back on the road.  


Here are the morals of this story:

1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.

2. If someone ever says to you, "Can I connect you to Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance?" They are making a direct threat on your life.  
 
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:26:56 AM EDT
[#1]

Quoted:

2. If someone ever says to you, "Can I connect you to Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance?" They are making a direct threat on your life.  
 


Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:27:52 AM EDT
[#2]
In.  Brilliant rant.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:27:56 AM EDT
[#3]
Sucks dude.

Nice pics.

AAA FTW if you can get it.

Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:28:06 AM EDT
[#4]

Quoted:

1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.


Or you could just keep an eye on your fuel gauge.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:28:13 AM EDT
[#5]
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:29:57 AM EDT
[#6]
That sounds fucking awful, sorry dude.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:30:00 AM EDT
[#7]
It you would have bought a more fuel efficient vehicle then you wouldn't have been in this fix.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:30:02 AM EDT
[#8]
6/10

Needs more drawing down and blading
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:30:22 AM EDT
[#9]
I say forward that little bit of trivia to Verizon corporate.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:30:49 AM EDT
[#10]

Quoted:
AAA FTW if you can get it.
+1

Quoted:

Quoted:
1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.
Or you could just keep an eye on your fuel gauge.
That too. I always reset the trip odometer whenever I fill up.

Kharn
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:30:54 AM EDT
[#11]
Maybe the better advice would be, never trust our fuel guage.

Glad you are ok.    
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:31:16 AM EDT
[#12]

Quoted:

Quoted:

1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.


Or you could just keep an eye on your fuel gauge.


RIF.  His fuel gauge was FUBAR.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:31:24 AM EDT
[#13]
Glad it turned out well for ya. I hate driving from Casper to Denver.

I would have stopped for ya and given you the 10  gallons of extra fuel I carry in my truck.

I work for Weatherford Directional out of Casper.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:32:13 AM EDT
[#14]
Needs an update with the OP's call to Verizon Roadside Assistance management.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:32:22 AM EDT
[#15]
Man that would have sucked.  Glad you finally got out of there.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:32:32 AM EDT
[#16]
10/10  I love a good Verizon rant.  A good friend used to have Verizon and listening to him on the phone with customer service was comedy gold.  I see their roadside assistance isnt any better.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:32:33 AM EDT
[#17]

Quoted:

Quoted:

1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.


Or you could just keep an eye on your fuel gauge.



Quoted:

23 miles later the needle of the fuel gauge finally unstuck and dropped to E in about a second and a half. Then the car sputtered and died. I was out of fuel with no sign of civilization for 23 miles to the North and 22 miles to the South. I raised my hood, hoping that some kind soul would stop and perhaps offer a ride.


Reading is fundamental!!!

Sorry about your bad luck Doc...glad all worked out!

M
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:34:01 AM EDT
[#18]
That's why it's a good idea to never go under 1/2 tank.

I avoid doing it, especially while traveling.  
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:34:03 AM EDT
[#19]

Quoted:

Quoted:

1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.


Or you could just keep an eye on your fuel gauge.



23 miles later the needle of the fuel gauge finally unstuck and dropped to E in about a second and a half


keep your eye on it as well as you read.................and your screwed
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:34:10 AM EDT
[#20]

Quoted:

Quoted:

Quoted:

1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.


Or you could just keep an eye on your fuel gauge.


RIF.  His fuel gauge was FUBAR.


I know this. But most people don't have faulty fuel gauges, so it's not necessary to travel with a full gas can in your car/truck. If I knew my fuel gauge was on the fritz, then yeah I would travel with extra gas.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:35:16 AM EDT
[#21]
10/10 good show!
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:35:23 AM EDT
[#22]

Quoted:
Needs an update with the OP's call to Verizon Roadside Assistance management.


^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:36:23 AM EDT
[#23]
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:38:13 AM EDT
[#24]

Quoted:
Sucks dude.

Nice pics.

AAA FTW if you can get it.



AAA has been a godsend for me a few times.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:38:30 AM EDT
[#25]

Quoted:

Quoted:
Needs an update with the OP's call to Verizon Roadside Assistance management.


^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^


Been on hold with them for about twenty minutes now.  Trying to find someone in charge.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:38:41 AM EDT
[#26]
Do you reset your Trip-meter after every fill up?

Irregardless...things can go wrong.  Glad you made it back to civilization in one piece.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:39:50 AM EDT
[#27]
Why didn't all those people following you help? Hell they could have at least let you borrow a cell phone...
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:39:53 AM EDT
[#28]
My fuel gauge drops to E every time I go below 3/4 of a tank.  Some chump siphoned the gas out of it on the previous owner, bending up the fuel level sensor as well as the dip tube.  Thank god the warning light still functions at 1/4 tank!
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:40:01 AM EDT
[#29]
Good thing this didn't happen in February.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:40:16 AM EDT
[#30]
tag for subsequent ass chewing.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:40:46 AM EDT
[#31]

Quoted:

2. If someone ever says to you, "Can I connect you to Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance?" They are making a direct threat on your life.  
 


Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:40:50 AM EDT
[#32]
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:42:43 AM EDT
[#33]
Damn! AND Verizon is taking over Alltel. Guess I will be keeping my gas tank full while traveling,
and bring a power cord.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:44:56 AM EDT
[#34]

Quoted:

Here are the morals of this story:

1. Never EVER travel without extra fuel.

2. If someone ever says to you, "Can I connect you to Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance?" They are making a direct threat on your life.  
 



Wasn't there just a thread about "do you fill up at half a tank" a few days ago?

I don't know if GM offers this, but I always reset my manual trip odometer in addition to my onboard computer for both odometer and average fuel economy as a backup of sorts to the fuel gauge.

BTW, I wouldn't drive out to the middle of BFE like that with anything less than a full tank.

John
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:44:59 AM EDT
[#35]
Great thread.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:45:26 AM EDT
[#36]

Quoted:
Thanks for the photos, they made my day.  I love the prairie, and proof there is life beyond an office cube.


Glad you're okay, too.  If you were a pilot, you would never trust a fuel gage.


Fuel gauge = my watch.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:45:58 AM EDT
[#37]
I always set my trip gauge in addition when I fuel up.  I know the drop-dead point on my Honda CRV is 260miles on the 12 gallons it holds.   Likewise I know that 310 miles is drop dead on the 13 gallons my Eclipse holds.   It used to do better, probably needs a tune up now.

All the damn gas gauges I have had in new cars seem to decrease on a logrithmic scale after 1/2 anyway.  I damn near got in bad shape in the middle of nowhere going by the gas gauge so I don't do that any more.  It's the trip gauge for me.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:46:33 AM EDT
[#38]


10/10 Awesome rant! I feel for you out there! Spent the night in one of mine one time because I refused to believe that the gas guage was not right. It SAYS it has fuel!
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:46:45 AM EDT
[#39]
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:46:45 AM EDT
[#40]
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:47:34 AM EDT
[#41]
NIce place to be stuck and at least it wasn't winter!
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:47:41 AM EDT
[#42]
I wouldn't mind being stuck in a place like that for 4 hours.

Could have been a lot worse.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:50:17 AM EDT
[#43]
Wow. That sucks. 10/10.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:50:33 AM EDT
[#44]
10/10
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:52:11 AM EDT
[#45]
82001






Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:53:42 AM EDT
[#46]
Venturing that far out in a GM vehicle is just asking for trouble.
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:53:54 AM EDT
[#47]
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:55:39 AM EDT
[#48]
i would be on the phone of the CEO of Verison soonest, for General pourposes alone. and demand some satisfaction..that is unacceptable in any circumstance.

Link Posted: 9/30/2008 9:56:12 AM EDT
[#49]
Link Posted: 9/30/2008 10:00:25 AM EDT
[#50]
I just got off the phone with Heather, supervisor with Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance.  She says she's real sorry.

I explained to her that leaving someone in the middle of nowhere, with a 12 hour walk to the next town and a phone with no battery when they've promised help is nothing short of attempted murder.  I requested a tape of the conversation I had with the lady yesterday to present to my lawyers.

I'm not really going to involve a lawyer.  I'd just be happy if someone took this lady aside, showed her their pimp hand and fired her for being a dumbass.

Then Heather explained to me that this is not the way it is supposed to happen and shouldn't deter me from using Verizon Wireless Roadside Assistance in the future.  This was my response:

Are you serious?  I called you once when I needed help and she left me in the middle of nowhere with no help coming.  Maybe that's not the way its supposed to be, but that's the way it was.  How could I possibly trust you guys ever again?  Maybe it was an isolated mistake but what happens when there's another isolated mistake next time.  I mean, I got lucky this time, but it could have easily gone the other way.  Out there in the prairie someone could have stopped just long enough to rob me, beat me to death and toss me in the ditch!"

Heather again said she was really sorry and she'll pull the recording from yesterday and look into it.
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