VAUGHAN, ON – Along with a big smile, Rohan Stephens has a big number 25 patch on his new khaki UPS blazer. It marks the number of years he has driven the courier service’s famous brown trucks without a single collision.
Stephens was presented with the UPS Circle of Honor blazer Wednesday alongside 17 other Ontario recipients. Canada, by year’s end, will have 132 UPS inductees within the Circle of Honor, part of some 8,000 UPS drivers worldwide to claim the 25-year safe driving milestone.
For Stephens, safe driving is all about starting the day off on the right foot, so you don’t end up with a lead one. He makes sure he gets a solid night’s sleep and is fully decompressed by the time he gets behind the wheel for his daily deliveries.
“Don’t let driving be a competition,” suggests Stephens, who lives in Brampton, ON.
Stephens says it’s critical to properly communicate with other drivers on the road by using his vehicle’s language: horn, lights and signals. He keeps his phone in the back seat, and only uses it during breaks. Of course, there’s always pressure to rush, but just don’t, he says.
Stephens is a UPS driving mentor and also an instructor with the UPS Road Code program, which aims, among other things, to teach kids at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Canada about the dangers of distracted driving. The program even utilizes driving simulators to really drive home the importance of proper training.
Three Ontario UPS drivers were also honored Wednesday for 30 years of accident-free driving.
“Every sports organization has its Hall of Fame. Here at UPS, the Circle of Honor is our Hall of Fame,” said Jerry Iacono, UPS global health and safety project manager. “You exemplify the best of the best, and that is what UPS is all about.”
UPS’s top safe driver in 2016 is Michigan package car driver Tom Camp, who has now driven for 53 years and delivered more than 5 million packages without an accident.
UPS 10 Point Driving Tips
When stopped in traffic, Have an escape route
When stopped in traffic keep one car length of space between you and the car in front of you. If the car in front of you should breakdown you can safely get around them without backing.