BC Driver of the Year Role Model for Industry
LANGLEY, BC — Driving five and a half million kilometers is impressive—that’s 137 trips around the Earth’s equator. It’s even more impressive when every single one of those kilometers is accident-free.
That’s exactly what David Pringle, the 2014 BC Trucking Association (BCTA)/Volvo Professional Driver of the Year, has achieved over his 36 years at Bandstra Transportation Systems Ltd.
"People keep sayin' to me that Bandstra must be a good place to work for. I say 'We have a good deal: I keep working and they keep paying me!' No, I love trucking," Pringle said when accepting his award at the BCTA's Annual Management Conference in Kelowna on June 7.
"I've been trucking for 45 years," Pringle said. "I started in the logging industry and my mother told me I was the only one of five kids to do that job we said we'd do when we were little."
The provincial Driver of the Year award annually recognizes and promotes safe driving among professional drivers. The winners usually have set themselves apart through community service and acts of bravery in addition to outstanding driving records.
Terry Warkentin, sales district manager at Volvo Trucks commented: "Back in 1977, Dave tapped Dick Bandstra on the shoulder, looking for a job. He became Bandstra's lowbed operator and it soon became apparent that Dave not only had the skills needed for the job but he became the go-to guy. Whenever there was a difficult haul or something off the grid, Dave was the man."
Northern BC saw a lot of Pringle over the decades as he hauled to and from the region’s many mining operations. He was often the first semi to arrive on those sites and was frequently requested for jobs out there—including delivering diamond drills for various exploration startups.
"One day Dave was pulling a load into Golden Bear Mine but he had not arrived due to a large snowstorm," Warkentin said. "Well, when the mine sent a crew out to rescue him, not only was he fine, but he had found a CAT and plowed a big part of the road while he was waiting for them."
Here's what his customers say about him:
- "Driver of the year? How about driver of the decade!"
- "He never complains, even if the job is hard or dirty. He just rolls his sleeves and digs in."
With files from David D'Orazio.