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55-Year Teamster Honored for 5 Million Accident-Free Miles


Bobby Elrod, a 55-year Teamster who has driven for YRC Freight—and Roadway before that—for 45 years, was honored by the company recently for driving 5 million consecutive miles without a single accident.

“They told me I was the third person ever to reach this level,” said Elrod, a member of Local 519 in Knoxville, Tennessee. Elrod has also been a member of Teamster Local Unions 515, 480 and 528.

Elrod said he adheres to the Smith System of defensive driving, which includes: “aim high in steering, get the big picture, keep your eyes moving, leave yourself and out and make sure they see you.”

Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa recognized Elrod’s achievement.

“Your accomplishment is particularly impressive given how few have matched this driving milestone,” Hoffa wrote to Elrod. “This excellence demonstrates your commitment to your craft. As you get recognized for this achievement, I hope you look back at your time on the road with fondness and good memories.”

Elrod, who is 77, said he is a very proud Teamster.

“It’s been a wonderful journey being a Teamster,” Elrod said. “It put both of my two boys through college.”

Elrod is not sure about his future plans, but said he feels like he could drive for YRC for another five years. His father was also a Teamster.