July 16, 2024

Unitrans takes a win in Hollard Highway Heroes competition

3 min read

As the festive season gets underway, leading transport, logistics and integrated supply chain solutions company Unitrans has much to celebrate. 

“Having five employees in the final of the Hollard Highway Heroes competition is testament to the high levels of professionalism and skill of our drivers,” says Derek Lewis, chief operating officer of the People Transport division of Unitrans.

Hollard Highway Heroes is a competition designed to create a broader awareness of truck and bus drivers’ invaluable role in transporting goods and commuters, and to promote driving excellence and safer roads.

One of the bus drivers from Mega Bus, Gabotlamang Jarius Gabonewe, walked away with a win in the Overall Bus Driver category, while fleet controller Molefe Micheal Makhele – and drivers Monuri Moletsane, Phakane Botipe, Nehonho Sixiphumia from Mega Bus Virginia – all made it to the final.

Gabonewe, a 36-year-old who hails from Taung, a small town in the North West Province of South Africa, was suitably rewarded for his dedication, commitment and outstanding performance in the bus industry.

He joined the company in 2016 and was delighted to receive this prestigious industry award. “I felt very proud when I found out I won. I was so happy I couldn’t even eat that night!” A first-time entrant, Gabotlamang has already thought about the best way to spend the money and says, “I will use the prize money to finish off my house, lay a tombstone for my late father, and put away some investments for my children.”

When asked about his passion for his job, Gabotlamang emphasised the meaningful relationships he has built with co-workers and passengers. Putting passenger needs first, his genuine care for them is evident in his adherence to road rules, careful driving and in the way he responds to passengers’ needs.

Reflecting on his position, he added: “People need to be aware of the patience, vigilance, concentration and consideration of safety required to excel within this profession. Bus drivers deserve the respect and recognition, as they are an important part of society at large.”

Hollard Trucking’s transformative annual road safety competition, Hollard Highway Heroes, has for the first time crowned two heroes: one in trucking and the other in the bus category. “We also included all fleet owners across the country, regardless of whether they are insured with Hollard or not. We’re particularly proud to have made this competition more inclusive and to have a chance to honour our heroes,” said Olivia Kumalo, key accounts manager at Hollard Trucking Risk Services.

Using telematics, participants are evaluated on various criteria including whether they exceed speed limits (defined as driving over 85km/h for 15 seconds or more), daytime fatigue driving (covering more than 300km or driving for four hours without breaks), night-time driving (covering more than 150km or driving for two hours and 15 minutes without a pause), and overall distance travelled daily.

Lewis added, “This award affirms Unitrans’ commitment to road safety and our investment in people. We are extremely proud of our winner and all the finalists who are beacons of excellence and demonstrate what can be achieved when a company attracts employees who understand the mission and vision of the company and give back in terms of their own commitment and work ethic.”

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