Snohomish County, Wash. – Two Community Transit drivers were honored this week with the agency’s prestigious Million Mile Award for safe driving. The drivers qualified for the distinction by meeting strict National Safety Council guidelines for driving the equivalent of one million and two million miles without a preventable accident.
Million Mile Driver
Allan Mehau reached one million miles of safe driving and has joined more than 50 drivers at Community Transit who have accomplished this feat. To join the elite group of safe drivers, it can take about 12.5 years of full-time driving without a preventable accident to reach the milestone.
Mehau has nearly 18 years of safe driving under his belt and says it’s important to look at the big picture. “I got this award by staying calm and putting safety first,” he said.
Mehau drives Swift Green Line and as a resident of Mill Creek, he takes pride in driving on a route that runs through his community. “Swift Green Line is great because it’s quick, predictable and efficient,” said Mehau. “It’s really popular among commuters—the word is out.”
One million miles of driving is the equivalent of walking from Everett to Seattle on the Interurban Trail, and back again more than 20,833 times.
Two Million Mile Driver
Nicomedes Plantilla of Everett was honored for reaching two million miles of safe driving, he’s the ninth driver at the agency to reach this status. After nearly 26 years of safe driving, Plantilla has advice to pass long to newer drivers: “As a bus driver, it’s important to be just as aware and safe as you were in your first years of driving.”
Plantilla currently drives Route 222. “I especially enjoy this route because it’s along the backroads in Tulalip and I get to provide service to those that need it,” he said.
Driving two million miles is the equivalent of traveling on a bus from Blaine, Washington to Jacksonville, Florida 644 times.
Million Mile Drivers are each presented a jacket, plaque, certificate and a pin, and have their name placed on one of the agency’s buses.
“The Million Mile Awards are among the most significant accomplishments we recognize because it represents safe driving skills,” Community Transit CEO Emmett Heath said. “There is no higher level of customer service than delivering our riders to their destinations safely.”
Community Transit is responsible for providing bus and paratransit service, vanpool and alternative commute options in Snohomish County. The agency is building a network of Swift bus rapid transit lines with Swift Blue Line along Highway 99 and the Swift Green Line between Canyon Park/Bothell and Boeing/Paine Field.