Friday, June 19, 2015

A story about the lottery ‘every trucker can relate to’

OOIDA Member Kevin Cibulka has some kind of luck. It’s just not clear to anybody what kind it is.

On the one hand, Cibulka has won two pretty sizeable scratch-off lottery jackpots in the past few months – a $1,000 winner in Ohio about three months back, and then a $500 winner just last weekend in his home state of Pennsylvania. So that sure seems like the good kind of luck.

On the other hand, he said it’s been hell to get the payout in both instances.

For starters, that $1,000 jackpot he won at a Love’s a few months back didn’t pay out immediately, on account of the fact that someone at the truck stop hadn’t even scanned the tickets in, meaning they came back “unauthorized” when he tried to cash in. Eventually he was able to get his money, but only after having to wait for a load to take him through Ohio.

“They had a book of tickets in there, and they never registered the tickets to be authorized to cash,” he said in a phone interview with Land Line. “I had to call the police, because if I’d tried to cash the ticket, they’d have arrested me for fraud or theft or something.”

Fast-forward to last Friday at the rest area in Bedford, Pa., about two hours away from Cibulka’s Home-20 in York. He decided to put $30 in the lotto machine and ended up with a $500 winner. Unfortunately, the rest area couldn’t cash out the ticket for more than $100, and offered to put the rest on a money order. Cibulka said he decided to wait until he got home and cash the ticket in somewhere else.

“Whoever came in behind me, played $68 worth of credits on the machine, and then they were able to cash out the rest of it,” he said. “They took that, without the winning ticket, and the cashier paid it out in a money order.”

Later on, the rest area manager called and said they wanted to give him a $500 money order for his winning ticket.

“It was just ridiculous,” he said. “I don’t know (if they caught the other guy). The state police took over the investigation. Basically he stole from the rest area because he took something that didn’t belong to him.”

As an owner-operator who hauls reefer trailers full of plant and garden nursery stock, Cibulka said his recent lottery experiences are a story that “basically every driver can relate to.”

“We’ll pay you, but you’re gonna have to wait for your money,” he deadpanned. “The lottery is the same way. … Stay away from lottery unless they prepay you.”