EIA Driver of the Year earns new Heil refuse truck

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When Richard Lemley was named one of the Environmental Industry Associations’ Drivers of the Year, he thought being recognized for his outstanding safety record was wonderful enough. Making that acknowledgement even sweeter, though, was his employer’s response to the award. Allied Waste Services of Albany in Latham, N.Y., provided Lemley with a new Heil refuse collection vehicle to drive. Lemley now uses his Heil Half/Pack front loader on his nearly 750-mile-per-week trash collection route.

An expert driver, Lemley has piloted rigs for Allied for 18 years without a reportable accident. His outstanding skill at the wheel is what prompted the EIA to name him its 2006 Driver of the Year in the Small Commercial category. The Washington, D.C.-based association annually recognizes refuse collection vehicle drivers nationwide for exceptional job performance. Lemley says he achieved his remarkable safety record by paying attention to detail and staying constantly focused. “You try to think ahead before you make your moves, and you always try to be alert,” he says.

“Everything about the guy is professional,” says Bob Griffin, general manager of Allied’s Albany division. “He takes pride in his work, and he takes care of his customers and his equipment.” Larry Stone, Heil regional manager, presented Lemley with his new Heil truck.”We build all of our refuse collection vehicles with safety, quality and reliability in mind, and we’re always looking for ways to improve,” Stone says.