By Tom O’Brien, President and CEO
At TA and Petro, we are proud of the great men and women who drive trucks in America, and believe that everyone should hear their stories. We created the Citizen Driver award to find and share those stories, and will rename some of our truckstops after the winners.
Citizen Driver intends to honor professional truck drivers who best exemplify the kind of quality individuals that we all know exist in trucking. Our goal is to give both industry and national recognition to the best thing in trucking — its salt-of-the-earth drivers.
Nominations can be submitted by friends, family, coworkers — anyone who knows a driver who deserves more than a pat on the back. The nomination form can be found at www.ta-petro.com/citizendriveraward.
We will consider all nominations. The program seeks out drivers who display strength in the categories of Citizenship, Safety, Community, Health and Wellness, and Leadership. One driver may meet all five of our suggested criteria. Another may have an abundance of just one or two of these characteristics. Still others may be exemplary because they are engaged in an admirable activity outside of our list. We want the Citizen Drivers to be people everyone can admire.
Throughout this year we will share the nominees’ stories. In January 2014, a panel of trucking professionals will decide on a group of finalists, who will receive recognition and a package of goods and services from TA and Petro.
Every Citizen Driver will have their favorite TA or Petro truckstop named after them. Not just a plaque and our familiar awning banners — the old name will be gone and the Citizen Driver’s name will live forever on that location.
All of our guests will know the high standards those winners bring to trucking. We hope that every trucker will feel proud, and that the public will gain a better understanding of the men and women driving the big rigs beside them on the highway.
New Petro Gary Opens
The completely Razed and rebuilt Petro Gary (I-80/I-94, Exit 9) opened in May, with 425 truck parking spaces, a six-bay Petro:Lube truck service center, 160-seat Iron Skillet, 15 driver showers, outdoor heated seating area and much more. “We rebuilt this travel center with the professional driver in mind,” says Tom O’Brien, President and CEO. “I hope you will come see the grand driver entrance, the wide-open space and the level of care and planning that went in to this facility.”
Get your exercise in and get some fresh air too. StayFit Outdoor Fitness Rooms are now open in four locations: TA Knoxville, Tenn. (I-40/I-75, Exit 374); TA Edinburg, Texas (Hwy. 281, Exit FM2812); Petro Salina, Kan. (I-70, Exit 252); and Petro Milan, N.M. (I-40, Exit 79).
The Outdoor Rooms have a plyometric area for jump training, an abdominal crunch/leg lift area and a push-up/rowing area. Combined, the three areas target all muscle groups and provide a good all-around workout.
There are already 120 TA and Petro locations with walking trails, and 17 locations with outdoor basketball hoops.
Three new indoor StayFit fitness rooms have also opened recently: TA Baldwin Fla. (I-10, Exit 343); TA Jacksonville South, Fla. (I-95,Exit 329); and TA Lake Park, Ga. (I-75, Exit 2).
TA and Petro News
- TravelCenters of America presented a BP Fueling Communities grant donation of $30,000 to the St. Christopher Truckers Development & Relief Fund (SCF), a nonprofit organization that provides assistance to professional truckers with medical problems that have led to financial hardship. This is the third consecutive year that the grant was awarded.
- The Band Together for SCF 2013 fundraising drive kicks off in August at TA and Petro locations. Drivers who donate $1 to help fellow truckers in need will receive a blue (TA) or green (Petro) commemorative wristband.
- TA and Petro now carry Goodyear Fuel Max steer, drive and trailer tires.
- Low-viscosity, 10W-30 synthetic blend diesel engine oil is now offered with preventative maintenance and for purchase in containers at participating TA Truck Service and Petro:Lube truck service facilities.
More New Locations
Three new locations, offering the service and amenities you expect from TA and Petro have recently opened.
- TA Mocksville, N.C. (I-40, Exit 170) has 145 truck parking spaces, seven showers and more.
- TA West Greenwich, R.I. ( I-95, Exit 5B) has 200 truck parking spaces, five showers and more.
- Petro Wells, Nev. (I-80, Exit 352A) has 300 truck parking spaces, five showers and more.
New 24-Hour Truck Service
Three locations now have always-open Truck Service Centers. TA Demotte, Ind. (I-65, Exit 230) has four service bays; TA Porter, Ind. (I-94, Exit 22B) has six service bays; and Petro Salina, Kan. (I-70, Exit 252) has four service bays.
All are equipped with a back-up generator to provide power in the event of an electrical outage.
Natural Gas Refueling Network
TravelCenters of America has entered into an agreement with Shell Oil to construct and operate a network of up to 200 liquid natural gas (LNG) fueling lanes at 100 TA and Petro locations across the country. As demand for natural gas in trucking rises, TA and Petro will be ready to meet it, with expectations that the first locations to carry LNG will be operational in the next year.
Kids Eat Free
Good news for drivers traveling with their kids this summer. TA and Petro will give children age 10 and under a free meal from the kids’ menu, with the purchase of an adult entrée. (Offer ends on Labor Day, Sept. 2, 2013.)
More than 1,000 UltraONE members have signed up for our Get Moving • Stay Fit driver wellness program. These drivers have committed to eight weeks of healthy eating and exercise, logging in their progress through the UltraONE kiosk. Everyone who successfully completes the program will receive the President’s Active Lifestyle Achievement Award Patch. They also earn Apple Credits that can be redeemed for prizes when they complete the program.
The program runs through Sept. 30, 2013. Good job so far to all participants and keep those healthy habits going.