TORONTO, Ont. — Corey Vaughan, a Nestleton, Ontario driver for of Kingston, Ont.-based SLH Transport is the 2001 Bridgestone/Firestone Canadian Truck Hero.
Vaughan was presented the award at this morning’s opening ceremonies of the Ontario Trucking Association Convention by Jerry Priddle, director of Public Relations and Advertising for Bridgestone/Firestone Canada. The professional operator’s quick thinking and courage is credited with saving the life of a 79-year-old man.
“The heroics that we are honoring are a testament to the strength and character of the Canadian trucking industry and its drivers,” says Priddle. “Not only do they provide a service that is vital to our economy, but as Corey Vaughan and the 43 previous award winners have demonstrated, they are willing to risk their lives to save others. Today is our opportunity to thank them.”
The accident occurred on a snow-covered Hwy. 69 last December when the northbound minivan lost control, crossed the median and was struck head on by a southbound car. The car went under the minivan propelling it into the air. The van landed on the passenger side and spun around several times before coming to a stop. With superior driving skill, Vaughan managed to avoid the accident and bring his truck to a safe stop so he could get out and help.
Vaughan doused the flames that had broken out in the minivan, then turned his attention to the car, which was smoking. Realizing the two occupants of the car had died, he turned back to the van to discover that a woman had been pinned under the van and was also deceased. The van burst into flames a second time. While dousing the flames with his fire extinguisher and snow, Vaughan saw a man still alive, trapped in the front seat of the van. He immediately pulled out the front window and, with help from another passer-by, got the man out of the vehicle to safety.
“The 2001 nominees were one of the strongest groups of candidates the award has ever seen,” says Priddle. “With so many strong candidates it made for a tough decision, but in the end, Mr. Vaughan stood out as the winner.”
Vaughan receives a trophy, a certificate, $3,000 from Bridgestone/Firestone and special recognition at the Ontario Trucking Association Convention.
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