Trucking Life: Awards
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Canadian Fleets Win 2013 National Safety Awards

Alex MacKinnon at the 2013 OTA convention in

GRAPEVINE, TX — Two Canadian fleets won the Truckload Carriers Association’s annual National Fleet Safety Awards, announced at TCA’s convention.

MacKinnon Transport Inc., of Guelph, ON, and Bison Transport of Winnipeg, MB won the 2013 awards, sponsored by Great West Casualty Co.

“These two carriers continually set the bar and demonstrate that they strive to achieve a high standard of excellence in the safety arena,” said Chris Burruss, TCA’s president. “Awarding TCA’s grand prize for fleet safety to both MacKinnon and Bison validates exactly that.”

MacKinnon, represented by Alex MacKinnon, vice president of finance and administration, won the award for truckload companies with total annual mileage of less than 25 million.

Bison, represented by Rob Penner, executive vice president and COO, won for truckload fleets with total annual mileage of 25 million or more.

About MacKinnon Transport

Founded in 1929, MacKinnon Transport believes safety plays an integral part of successful business, Alex MacKinnon said. Every aspect of its corporate culture has been designed to support safety.

MacKinnon has strict hiring procedures, safety-based bonuses and an open-door communications policy to addresses driver and staff concerns quickly.

MacKinnon said there’s a difference between someone who is a certified road professional and someone who is just a truck driver. They value the skills and professionalism of drivers and developed the Road Master Driver Program.

The initiative recognizes those who belong to "an expert league of professionals who are amongst the very best in the industry."

According to MacKinnon’s grand prize application, “While safety has always been a priority and part of the culture since our founding 84 years ago, we believe that we must always increase the importance within our organization.

"Our safety program operates within the framework of continuous improvement at all levels of the organization and is ingrained in our mission, vision, and core values.”

About Bison Transport

Bison Transport’s extensive safety program is based on the philosophy that each driver and staff person is a shareholder who is accountable for results, Penner said.

Bison invests to recognize drivers and on incentive programs to strengthen drivers’ motivation to be safe. The company offers many ways to communicate to keep people informed and engaged, as well as a health and wellness program.

Over the past four years, Bison has reduced its overall accident, insurance, and claims costs by more than $1.3 million. Since 2011, it’s cut its insurance premiums by five percent annually.

According to Bison Transport’s grand prize application, “Bison recognizes that, to truly succeed, a steadfast commitment to safety must be our core value. We have stayed true to that value through the ups and downs of growth and a challenging industry and economy. Safety is about lives, livelihoods, and doing what is right.” 

The awards

The application process for the National Fleet Safety Awards began with member fleets submitting their accident frequency per million miles driven.

TCA selected the top three winners for each of six mileage-based divisions and had the results audited for accuracy by an independent expert.

In January, TCA announced the names of the 18 division winners and invited them to submit further documentation about their safety programs.

In order to be granted the grand prize, both winning companies had to show that they strive to meet stringent standards in their overall safety programs, on and off the highway, and were judged to be the best in their commitment to improving safety on North America’s highways.

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