Truckers on AskReddit were asked about some of the most horrifying experiences they’ve had while parked overnight somewhere. Get ready for some strange tales that it either turned out to be nothing too serious, or a moment that could have turned into something much worse.
Source list available at the end.
I used to haul salt water from well sites in Oklahoma during my night shift. I was standing at the rear of my trailer as I was loading out in BFE somewhere when I suddenly heard gravel crunching. It sounded like someone was walking towards me. I got the feeling I was being watched. So, I stepped around the trailer, towards the sound, and shone my flashlight at a cow licking the side of my trailer.
Back when my dad was a truck driver, he stopped to sleep in a lot one night. The guy who he leased his truck from happened to see him parked there, and in the morning, when my dad went to the restroom, this guy used a spare key and hide in the sleeper.
Once my dad started to leave, the guy reached out and grabbed him. My dad said he freaked him out so much so that he just bailed out of the truck. It was moving around 5 mph.
My boyfriend is a truck driver who routinely does midnight runs. Oddly enough, I asked him this question myself a few days ago. He told me that one night he was getting ready to park in a lot next to a truck stop. He said it looked like there was no lights, no cars, no sign of anyone, but he said screw it- he was tired. He woke up the next morning parked on the side of the road with three highway patrol vehicles behind him. He was about 15 miles away from the truck stop he had parked at. Thing is, he was sleeping in his camper the whole night. He has no idea how he got on the side of the road and logic says someone tried stealing the truck and succeeded, and the police convinced him of this happening as they saw “a man in a black jumpsuit” running away from his truck into a nearby field. Even then, he still feels uneasy about the whole situation. Apparently, the doors were still locked from the inside, and there was no real sign of anyone trying to break in.
I have a trucker story from my extended family. An uncle of mine used to drive a lot, and he always came back with the most interesting stories ever.
While every family member knew about his stories, there was one story in particular that he told and warned us about. He even told it to me when I was around 6-years-old. Moral of the story is to never stay out during night in the desert alone.
It seems, once he drove to Chile, he had a contract and the way there was okay. (I made the travel myself later in life, and it’s beautiful). Whenever he was done, he usually spent a few bucks on booze, but this time due to a family gathering, he wanted to come back as soon as possible. So, instead of drinking in some bar, he decided to sleep a bit at the Atacama desert. He parked way outside the road and a few miles before the next village. He fell asleep and woke up to someone singing. He was confused and thought maybe it was the radio, but the radio wasn’t on. Then the singing stopped, and it sounded more like a scream for help. That’s when he wanted to get out and help, but he was still so confused. He said he started the motor and the lights to see who or what was there. He also did open the window a bit and yelled trying to figure out what happened.
It was nothing and right when he decided to get out anyway, he caught a movement in the corner where the lights ended. It looked like a woman, but the face was pitch dark.
He freaked out and drove away nonstop until he reached back home.
Whatever he saw or thought that he had seen, every time he retold this story his face would go pale. Even my Grandmother commented on how he was usually a very jolly guy, but whatever happened in the Atacama desert really did freak him out.
Not a trucker, but I drive a lot of miles in a company truck for my oil field company. I am on call 24/7. So, I’m out at all hours.
One night, after a long day on location in the Oklahoma panhandle (which is a rather remote and sparsely populated area), I was driving back to the town where my shop was located. I got too sleepy to drive and decided to pull over and nap until the sun came up. I pulled off of the two lane highway down a county road and parked on the side of that road. It’s safer than pulling off on the shoulder of the highway with no headlights to bother you. This was a common practice of mine.
I left my pickup running and turned the headlights off and leaned my seat back and fell asleep pretty quick with the A/C on low and the radio turned off. I slept pretty good, for maybe an hour or so. I guess I was having a strange dream because I woke up but just kept laying there because I was so groggy.
The wind was picking up and sort of shaking the truck with random strong gusts. There’s lots of wind in Oklahoma.
Eventually, I started to imagine that I was hearing whispering or murmurs, but I attributed it to the wind and my sleepy state, or maybe the radio being still on low volume or something. I kept hearing it, so I sat up and turned the headlights back on to look around.
The lights illuminated the dirt road to my side and in front of me. About fifty feet in front of my truck and extending down the road into the dark where my headlights faded out, there were maybe twenty coyotes all milling around and sniffling around in the gravel of the road. Their eyes reflecting in the lights. Coyotes usually run away from light and avoid humans and all of their noise at all costs. There was no fear in these coyotes, and I was sort of struck by how many there were all standing in the road. They eventually moved off into the dark as a group.
I wasn’t really afraid as I was inside my truck, but my feeling was an uneasy one. So, I got back on the highway and went home.
One of my good friends from middle school had a stepfather who was a truck driver for a good amount of time. He was a tough guy. He totally looked like he could kill someone except for one time when he told us why he stopped driving trucks.
He was on a long trip from somewhere down in Texas to Boise, Idaho. By the time he hit the freeway close to Boise, he’d already been up for 24 hours. Either way, I don’t think he could have seen this coming.
Outside of Boise, he was driving late at night using the fastest legal speed when, out of nowhere, he saw someone sit straight up in the middle of the road. He didn’t have enough time to hit the brakes, not that it would have helped, she was decapitated on the spot. He later found out that she was tweaked out.
I don’t think that even if he wasn’t sleep deprived he would have seen her lying on the road. From what the police could gather, she walked out there, sat down, and eventually fell asleep on the road. No one knew who she was, or how she got there.
My father-in-law was a trucker in Australia. He told me a story about a night in the middle of the outback- not a soul in site and hundreds of kilometres between towns, when one of his tires blew out. He pulled to the the shoulder of the road and started changing it. Feeling uneasy, he kept looking over his shoulder. Something just wasn’t right. He continued to work fast and told himself to not be a scaredy-cat. Then, all of a sudden, a hand lands on his shoulder. “Hey there mate, you have a spare smoke?” A man wandered up to him like it was totally the normal thing to do in the middle of the night, in the middle of nowhere. He said, “No mate, I don’t smoke.” The man just walked away into the darkness He reckoned he aged about 20 years that night.
I was driving in a team truck, and I would usually drive the night shift. It was about 1 am, and I was listening to “Art Bell” on Sirius/XM. Now, I am the biggest skeptic on the planet, but I also love a good spooky story. So, I always enjoyed listening to his show during the short time that he was on there.
I was rolling along on I 40 with no traffic, everything was going smoothly, and these guys were on the radio talking about taking digital recorders to cemeteries and recording the voices of the dead. A lot of the voices were supposed to be children begging for help. It was seriously creeping me out. All of a sudden, the biggest skunk that I had ever seen appeared in my head lights. I screamed like a little girl.
I hit it. I couldn’t swerve the truck for animals because you can roll the rig too easily. My co-driver was woken up by my scream and came out of the sleeper to see what was happening. Then the smell hit us. I had the AC on (just the fan) with outside air because it was cool out and that skunk odor filled the cab. We had to pull over to the shoulder and get out to get fresh air. The truck smelled like a skunk for weeks.
My brother was a truck driver in the 90s/early 2000s. He was driving through Pennsylvania on the way back to NJ. He pulled over to the side of the road and behind two other trailers. In the early morning, he heard someone banging on his right door. He quickly jumped from the sleeping compartment and grabbed his bat. As he looked out of the window, no one was there- but there was a bang on the left side. Freaked out, he looked out that window and there was nothing but silence. He was trying to figure out what was going on. Seconds later, he started to hear banging on both of the doors simultaneously. He said the banging was so loud and heavy that the truck started shaking. Both curtains open, and he could see no one there. He quickly jumped in the driver’s seat and started the truck. He saw the other two trucks ahead of him do the same. He said that he felt like they all had experienced the same thing.
My grandad was a truck driver in Korea when he was in the army post WW2. Every night, driving down a supply road, a certain tree would always bang on his roof. He finally got so sick of this happening that one day he stopped the truck, climbed out, and cut the hanging branches. He shone the torch down the dark road and it was LEGS. Apparently, traitors were hung there. He only drove the route at night, and that’s why he didn’t notice it before.
I once was stopped by a train in Calumet City, Il. It was probably around 2 or 3 am, and it wasn’t the best area. So, I was a little uneasy being there at the time. The company I was delivering to was at the dead end just after the tracks. Of course, there wasn’t anyone else around except for myself. I sat parked for like 5 minutes waiting on the train. All of a sudden, I heard loud knocking on my door. Whatever it was, they were rapidly trying to get my attention. I had a day cab. So, I looked all around the truck through the windows and mirrors but nobody. The road was wide enough that I would have totally seen someone running away after doing it. I’m sure it was something that was not on from this planet, and I accept that. I’m sure people have been killed in this area at some point in the past.
I had to park in a bad neighborhood in Oakland once. It was in the middle of the night, and I was worn out. Out of hours, I couldn’t find a truck stop or anywhere safe to park. The customer was in that neighborhood, but it was obviously closed until morning. I saw broken glass on the street, bars on all the windows, etc. The place just looked bad all around. I parked by the curb and expected to be kept awake all night, but surprisingly it was the quietest night I’ve ever experienced. No people, no cars, and no dogs barking. I didn’t even hear any planes flying overhead. I thought that was kind of creepy.
I’m a female, so I get creeped out a ton. I drive at night because I thought it was more peaceful and my husband drives during the day. I avoided rest stops like the plague because they always seemed the creepiest. I also listened to “Forensic Files” on the radio while driving and it fuels my paranoia. One night when I had first started driving, I stopped at a rest stop, instead of, a well lit truck stop just to use the bathroom and stretch my legs. I heard on the news a week later that a middle aged woman had been kidnapped from a rest stop in Arizona, and they hadn’t found her yet. I had just been in Arizona a few days prior. I may not have been at the same one, but it still makes me feel vulnerable. I carry mace everywhere I go now.
I drive a truck locally and start early in the a.m. before the roads get clogged with traffic. One morning last winter, we had our first snow fall and I was delivering to a stop in the dark. We’re given keys to enter a lot of the stops before hours. I work pretty fast when I have the doors unlocked to make sure I have eyes on the entrance so no one can steal anything from the place I am delivering to. Well, I had finished up and was heading back to my truck when I noticed a new set of footprints in the fresh snow coming off of the sidewalk, right up to my driver door, and then back to the side walk, and down the road. I, like a dork, had forgotten to lock my truck and was frantically looking through my truck making sure they didn’t take anything. Luckily, I must have scared them off because my backpack was still there. I followed the tracks as far as I could and yelled just to put some fear in whoever was prowling around my truck.
My dad has been a truck driver my entire life and then some. When I was younger, I used to ride with him during certain school vacations like spring break, some of summer break, and Christmas break. You get the idea. I was a very, very tiny girl when I was younger. When I used to ride with my dad on long hauls, I would get my blanket and pillow and get down underneath the dashboard on the passenger’s side (like where your feet would go if you’re sitting). Well, if you have ever seen a semi, sometimes there is a small tiny window down there in the bottom of the door on each side. I liked to sit down there with my pillow and blanket, read books, and watch out the little window as my dad drove. One evening, we had stopped at a truck stop for my dad to fuel up and to get something for us to eat. I had been asleep for a little while before my dad had pulled into the truck stop. All I remember is waking up to some random looking old guy looking through that little tiny window at me. It freaked me the hell out. His face was literally pressed up against the glass. I had never been so startled before. Thankfully, my dad must’ve been like two steps away because within 10 seconds he disappeared. I heard my dad yell, he ended up jumping back in the truck, and we left.
I used to drive a truck in northern Manitoba. There’s a road in the northeast you can drive for several hours and see very few vehicles. This road is quite flat and straight in stretches, of course, this is deep in the bush. One day, I saw something cross the road in the distance. It was very large (easily past the hood on my truck), but it was not long like a moose or an elk just tall. It disappeared into the bush, and as I drove by the spot, the hair on the back of my neck stood up.
Days later, I heard a tow truck driver describing on the radio his encounter with a similar creature, only he was much more clear that he had spotted Bigfoot. This guy went to some length to explain to people that he wasn’t crazy, but he was sure of what he saw. I asked an aboriginal client of mine in a nearby community and he said the Elders commonly spoke of them in the same way they spoke about the other animals.
I don’t know what I saw that day, but I’m certain it wasn’t a bear, moose, deer, or elk. I don’t know what the hell it was.
My uncle was a truck driver. He used to do U.S. to Canada runs regularly in his younger days. He told me this story once where he was at a truck stop preparing to get some sleep for the night and a prostitute (not sure how he knew for sure) was knocking on the door.
He said it was quite normal, except for this night, he pretended like he wasn’t there and she moved on. He woke up the next morning and saw police cars around him. Another trucker in a nearby lane was found murdered.
One time late at night, I pulled into this dimly lit, lonely truck stop somewhere in the south. I want to say Alabama, and it was raining too. Right before I went to bed, I was on my phone. Suddenly, I hear a knock on my door. I always hate it when someone knocks on my door because I know it’ll still surprise me every single time. This time, especially, because it was late and no one was parked near me. I lowered my window and see this middle aged man holding up a driver’s license saying how he needs help because his rig broke down. Now this truck stop was right off of the freeway. The only thing between it and the road was a ditch and a line of trees. That wasn’t a long walk away, but I wasn’t eager to step outside in this weather and also because it was dark. He asked specifically for cash, but I only carried around my card, so I told him I couldn’t help him. He said fine and went on to bother some other guy. If he was still around in the morning, I decided I would help him out, but no one with a broken truck was around. When I asked some of the cashiers around the area, they said they didn’t see anyone come in asking for help. I think I might’ve avoided being mugged or getting murdered, but otherwise, it nothing too unusual.
Post are edited for clarity.