ARLINGTON, Va. — Ron Baird has been a professional truck driver for more than 57 years. He’s driven through mountains, deserts, snowstorms, rainstorms and has seen just about everything a man can see on the highways and byways of North America and abroad.
During all these adventures, he has enjoyed 7.3 million accident-free miles.
“Safety is an absolute must,” Baird said. “You have to be safe while driving. I’ve seen too many accidents on the road.”
To honor his safety record, Trucking Moves America Forward has included Baird in its recent Safety Champions awards.
“TMAF is expanding its Meet The Truckers features to tell the story of some of the professional truck drivers with exceptional safety records,” according to a news release.
Baird said his safety tips are simple: “I always pay attention to other motorists around me and am constantly looking up ahead and around me. A safe following distance is necessary, too.”
Baird has been to all 48 lower states and five providences in Canada during his trucking career.
“Trucking has even taken me to other countries,” he said.
“I’ve driven trucks in the Bahamas, Puerto Rico and Cuba while in Navy Sea Bees. I’m like a professional tourist.”
Baird said his favorite route is from Las Cruces, New Mexico, going into Santa Rosa, New Mexico.
“I also really enjoy the scenery while driving in Utah and Colorado,” he said.
“I enjoy helping others, like taking children for a ride for the Make A Wish parades at truck shows. I have also enjoyed being of help to motorists and fellow trucker drivers, whether it’s helping someone change a tire on the road or helping with a truck stopped on the road.”
The safe driving accolade isn’t Baird’s only award, either.
He also received the National Tank Truck Carriers Professional Tank Truck Driver of the Year award this year.
“I always thought, if you’re a tank driver, this is your award to go for,” Baird said. “I think any tank driver should set a goal to try to win this award. It makes you a better driver because you try harder, and it helps your company.”
Trucking Moves America Forward’s mission is to establish a long-term industry-wide movement to create a positive image for the industry, to ensure that policymakers and the public understand the importance of the trucking industry to the nation’s economy and to build the political and grassroots support necessary to strengthen and grow the industry in the future.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.