Harford Transit Bus Driver Dave Hall Steers His Way to First Place in Statewide “Roadeo” Competition

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Harford County officials pictured from left, Steve Overbay, deputy director of the Office of Community & Economic Development; Robbin Rice, Transit bus operator; Dave Hall, Transit bus operator; County Executive Barry Glassman; Len Parrish, director of Community & Economic Development; Jay Gaeng, Transit bus operator; Doug Townsend, Transit operations supervisor; Gary Blazinsky, Transit administrator; Harford County Director of Administration Billy Boniface.

 

Harford Transit LINK bus operator Dave Hall won first place among nearly 40 drivers at the Transportation Association of Maryland’s “Roadeo” competition held on April 21 at the Dorsey MARC Train Station in Hanover. The annual statewide event is a test of safety and driving skills for professional bus drivers. Hall is a 37-year Harford County Transit employee and a repeat champion who will go on to compete in his ninth national Roadeo, where he previously earned three first-place trophies. Harford Transit drivers Robbin Rice and Jay Gaeng also participated in the state competition.

“Harford County is proud of our Transit LINK drivers for demonstrating their skills and professionalism in this competition,” County Executive Barry Glassman said. “We are especially proud of Dave and wish him an easy road to victory at nationals!”

The Roadeo competition consists of a pre-trip inspection, wheelchair securement demonstration, and an obstacle course. The pre-trip inspection challenges drivers to locate staged defects while performing a full pre-trip vehicle inspection. In the wheelchair securement demonstration, drivers perform and verbalize the process of loading wheelchairs and securing passengers. The obstacle course imitates the daily challenges of transit service and drivers are judged on the smoothness of their driving. Each section is timed with points awarded or deducted based on performance. After all three sections, Hall came away with a score of 812 out of 875 points, which is the highest score recorded in recent history.

Successful competitors finishing in first, second and third place received a Transportation Association of Maryland scholarship to compete at the National Community Transportation Association of America Roadeo being held this year on June 9 – 10 in Pittsburgh. The national competition includes the challenges above, plus a written exam. Hall will be one of three competitors representing the state of Maryland.

Throughout his career, Dave Hall has worked with Harford Transit as a bus driver, a lead driver, and in a supervisory role. After a brief retirement, he currently drives Harford Transit’s Demand Response routes, taking riders to work, doctor’s appointments, senior activity centers and other destinations. He also assists with training new drivers on wheelchair securement and transporting clients on medical trips.

Harford County Transit LINK operates 43 vehicles Monday through Friday with eight routes countywide and into Cecil County. The LINK also connects with MTA/MARC trains, MTA commuter buses, and regional Greyhound, which then connect with main terminals in Baltimore and interstate travel. Key service areas include Harford Community College, the Mary E. Risteau State Office Building, Upper Chesapeake Health and Harford Memorial hospitals, Perryman Peninsula and Riverside business communities, Aberdeen Train Station, Harford Mall, the Constant Friendship shopping area, Edgewater Village Shopping Center, and Beard’s Hill Shopping Plaza. For more information about Harford Transit LINK schedules and routes, call 410-612-1620 or visit www.harfordtransitlink.org.

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