The Private Motor Truck Council of Canada (PMTC) have inducted Yves Bélanger, Alvin Carter, Dwayne Saik and Grant Taylor into its Hall of Fame for Professional Drivers.
PMTC also presented the 2023 Rick Austin Memorial Dispatcher of the Year Award to Wallace Green of Gray Ridge Eggs during its annual conference in Hamilton, Ont.
“The skills of professional truck drivers are evident to all road users, and are especially valued by their employers,” said PMTC president Mike Millian. “These professionals compile safe driving records that are beyond amazing, considering all the adverse conditions they face every day. Only a select few can equal the caliber of the drivers in the Hall of Fame. The industry and the PMTC salutes these individuals, and we are pleased to honor them for their amazing careers.”
Together, the four drivers have amassed 161 years and more than 18.3 million kilometers of accident-free driving.
Yves Bélanger, Linde Canada
Bélanger, who drives for Linde Canada, completed a diploma in heavy-duty mechanics after high school and obtained his Class 1 licence in 1989.
He’s hauled lumber, bulk and liquid dangerous goods across Canada and into the U.S., was made a driver trainer, and expanded into promoting safety and compliance to industry newcomers.
He has also hauled super B trains in all seasons.
Bélanger has been a full-time professional driver for 30 years and has more than 4.8 million accident- and incident-free driving.
Alvin Carter, Home Hardware Stores
Carter, who drives for Home Hardware Stores, has hauled cattle and pigs in straight trucks, driven tractor-trailers hauling livestock and fertilizer, and hauled dump trailers to grain ports.
In 1998, he joined Home Hardware Stores, retiring in 2022 after almost 35 years of service.
He’s traveled between Winnipeg and Nova Scotia, and also served on the fleet’s accident review and health and safety committees.
Carter’s career includes 40 years of accident- and incident-free driving, spanning more than 4 million kilometers.
Dwayne Saik, Linde Canada
Saik, who works for Linde Canada, learned to drive a Massey 30 farm tractor at the age of 10 on the family farm in Alberta.
He obtained his commercial licence in 1977 and has hauled gravel and sand and other types of goods across Canada and the U.S., logging more than 2 million kilometers.
In 1993, Saik joined Linde Canada, formerly known as Praxair, and beganing hauling cryogenic liquids and specialty gases.
He has a total of over 45 years and 4.5 million kilometers of accident- and incident-free driving.
Grant Taylor, Wellington Group
Taylor, who’s been working at Wellington Group of Companies for the past four years, began his unofficial driving career 49 years ago when he was 15, shunting trucks at a dairy in Toronto.
He became an owner-operator at 19, hauled concrete mixers for two decades, and drove snowplows in winter.
At the age of 50, Taylor graduated with a diploma in the study of addiction from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont. He is a sponsor for alcoholics, and when he retires he plans to open a pro-bono office to counsel them.
Grant has been driving for 46 years and has more than 4 million kilometers without an at-fault collision.
Dispatcher of the Year
Green, has been working with Gray Ridge Eggs since 1971. He earned his A/Z licence shortly after and found he had a talent for knowing how the routes would go together efficiently or which driver would suit a customer best.
He never let a driver do something he wouldn’t do, and would personally run routes to make sure they were workable and safe. Every night before he goes home, every driver is called and informed of their route. Green has done this for 40 years.
He has navigated the transportation division of Gray Ridge Eggs from four trucks when he started, to two terminals and 46 trucks today.
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