Saturday, May 25, 2013

IMS - Day # 19 - Traffic Control - 14th Day - CARB Day

Over the previous 13 days we have heard stories about CARB Day, and the day, itself, actually lived up to the hype of our co-workers.  For whatever reason our start time was moved up 15 minutes from 5:45 to 5:30 am.  We arrived at the check in area to clock in at exactly 5:15, but had to wait until 5:30 to get a ride down to Gate # 2 because the shuttle drivers were not scheduled to start "shuttling" until 5:45.......huh?  I guess like any large organization with layers of bureaucracy, there is a lack of connecting dots from time to if you are have one large group of employees scheduled to be on duty at a specific time you must have a way of transporting them 1.5 miles to their work station so that they arrive at their actual start time, right?  We can only clock in 15 minutes prior to our start time.  Even if we clock in at exactly 15 minutes prior to our start time and took off walking immediately it takes at least 30 minutes to walk at a brisk pace to our station.  

Okay, that's my mini rant for the over scheme of things it's a small glitch, and no one was upset that we were 10 minutes late.  One thing IMS Guest Services does do consistently is to have more people on duty than are needed at any time so we are never overwhelmed, but we usually have a lot of people standing around doing nothing.

Before it got crazy

The day started out overcast, and quite chilly.  People started arriving before 7 am to enter the infield, however, the gates did not open until 8 am, so we were turning away cars by the hundreds.  At 8 am sharp the sky fell......traffic on 16th Street was back up 3 lanes wide to the east as far as the eye could see, and that did not let up for 6 hours.  My first shift on the line ran from 5:45 am to 7 am.  When I came back on at 8 am I didn't leave my post until almost 12:30 pm.....same for TLE, and for all our co-workers.  The amazing thing is it didn't seem like that long.

As it began to let up we started taking short breaks to get water, eat something lasting about 15 minutes here and there.  

At last, around 3:30 people and cars began to stream out of the infield area, and, apparently they must have drained a small brewery because that is what the crowd smelled like as they walked, staggered, bobbed, and weaved out of the facility.  By 4 pm traffic east and west on 16th Street was grid locked.  I wish I had time to take a few pictures of the area from the same vantage point as the above could not have seen the street for all the cars and people.  Public intoxication was the rule, not the exception.  I am still stunned by what I witnessed.  We were supposed to get off at 4, but were not dismissed until just after 6.

We got our first pay checks on Friday when we clocked out, and arrived back home just before 7 pm.

What a crazy, busy day........two days to go....Saturday should be a little less intense, but then comes Race Day when it will really get crazy here.  Stay tuned!

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