FERGUS, Ont. — Alberta’s Irvin Duncan, who has driven nine million miles accident free, was named the 2004 Owner/Operator of the Year yesterday at the Fergus Truck Show.
Duncan, past winner of the Driver of the Year for Alberta, has 58 years of driving experience and has driven everything from gravel trucks with pups to liquid bulk haulers and belly dumps. He bought his first truck at the age of 16.
For the past 11 years he’s been contracted with Chinook Carriers.
“But Duncan is much more than an experienced, capable and very safe driver,” said Editorial Director Lou Smyrlis during the award presentation. “He stands out as much for his personality as for his talent.”
In his 58 years on the road Duncan has proved himself a hero many times over – pulling vehicles out of ditches, directing traffic, comforting people involved in accidents. He’s saved children trapped in their cars during a fast-moving twister and rescued a man trapped under a wreckage.
“He is the type of man that if he delivers a load and the person at the dock is not ready to receive it, he will work alongside the man to help him get ready – and do it with a smile,” Smyrlis said.
The Truck News Owner/Operator of the Year Award has been handed out to exceptional industry representatives for the past 10 years. It is sponsored by Freightliner Trucks Canada, Markel Insurance Company of Canada, and Goodyear Canada. Supporting Partners include the Owner Operator Business Association of Canada and Fleet Smart.
“Trucking has become crucial to the Canadian economy. But the trucking industry would not enjoy the success it does without the owner/operator. In fact, the industry could not survive without the owner/operator. And yet, trucking is one of the most misunderstood of industries and the owner/operator is one of the most underappreciated of professions,” said Smyrlis. “We need to change this. We must change this. The Owner/Operator of the Year Award is our contribution to this change.”
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