Metro Transit driver Jerry Olson remembers well two traffic accidents he had not long after he started driving in high school, which did in his 1955 Chevy, the Star Tribune reports.
But Olson, 61, hasn't had a single traffic incident in his 39 years as a bus driver, which earned him his 39th Safe Operator Award – a first, newspaper reports.
At banquet Thursday, Metro Transit Police Chief John Harrington reminded his audience that bus drivers have a tough job who put up with boisterous drunks, emotionally challenged passengers, terrible drivers – and treacherous winter roads.
But Olson has worked a wide variety of routes over the decades, dodging potholes, tolerating annoying riders on cellphones, and, in 1991, driving through the Halloween blizzard.
“I don’t feel like a superstar, but I’m very proud of my record,” Olson told the Star Tribune. “It’s about patience. If somebody cuts you off, what are you gonna do?”