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Spotlight Story: Ken Bullock

by Charlotte Freed | Dec 31, 2018
Ken Bullock Centerline Driver

The road has many rules: speed limits, proper turning, indication, licensing, and restrictions. But some rules are unspoken. It can take years behind the wheel to truly appreciate and understand the intricacies of driving. When we spoke with Ken Bullock, it was clear he bore that wisdom. One of those unspoken rules as a professional driver is that you hold the safety of many lives at ten and two, right there on the wheel.

Ken says “you have to appreciate what you do and you’ve got to remember you’ve got 80,000 pounds under you…just imagine your mother being out there and somebody being behind her drunk or not paying attention or falling asleep…that’s one of the rules I’ve always kind of lived by.” Respecting his own life, the lives of the public, and honoring his equipment is advice his own father, once a truck driver, imparted on Ken when he first began his career.

Driving trucks since he was sixteen, Ken got his CDL when he was twenty-two. From an owner-operator with six dump trucks and a driver day-to-day, Ken embarks on his thirtieth year behind the wheel. Though now, he considers stepping into a management position to make room for new talent. Ken envisions taking the experience he’s had as a seasoned driver and as an instructor and trainer to stay in the trucking industry on the managerial side, sharing from his wealth of knowledge.

Ken acknowledges that things have changed since his first years in trucking. He remarks on the drastic changes that technology brings to the space, mentioning the influence GPS has made on driver attentiveness, saying focused is lost because drivers feel they need less to pay attention to their surroundings. Ken also talked about how automatic trucks make him wary, because without a human driver behind the wheel it could be much less safe. However, he knows how important safety training is to keep more accidents from happening.

Only involved in two minor accidents throughout his career, where Ken was not at fault, he looks back to those situations and you can tell how shaken he is at the potential of injuring someone. He says “my worst, absolutely worst fear would be to get into an accident and hurt somebody” – and we believe him when he says that his main piece of advice for any driver is to master things from a safety standpoint. Ken says that while trucking can be tolling, it can also be very rewarding. If you’re going to be part of the industry, make a commitment and “respect yourself and respect the public and respect your equipment.”  If you can do that, he thinks the trucking industry could be a great fit.

Ken concludes by sharing his visions of expanding his fleet, even with just a few more trailers, to efficiently run his own operation. Regardless of what Ken moves on to do, it’s promising to know that we have such dedicated professionals, committed to keeping our nation’s roads safe and spreading the importance of respecting the rules. Both the established and unspoken.

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  1. Steven purl | Jan 07, 2019

      Stay safe Mr. Bullock and thank you for your contributions to the industry!

      Have a great 2019 and stay safe!

       

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