The Million Miles Truck That’s Now Saving Lives

Posted in Connect on April 24, 2019.

Ger Tonra, a County Council truck driver recently retired after 43 years with Mayo County Council and so has his County Council truck . For many of those years Ger’s pride and joy was an 19-year-old Volvo FM1036. Ger drove the Volvo daily, going about Council work throughout the far stretches of the county, clocking many miles each day, so much so the truck has amassed almost one million miles on the clock, without ever breaking down. The truck has recently been used to deliver a road safety message to 35 young people from Comhairle na nÓg on blind spots in trucks.

This feat is mostly down to the care and consideration Ger and the Mayo County Council’s Maintenance Staff bestowed on the vehicle, with the majority of the vehicle maintenance was carried out by in the County Council Machinery Yard in Castlebar, using all genuine Volvo parts. “We always had her serviced bang on the mileage and changed the filters as we should. A few small bits went in it and other than that we had no problems, the engine has never been stripped down, nor has the gearbox and she’s still got her original gear box and engine.” says Ger.

Purchased from Enda Birmingham in Charlestown eighteen years ago, Ger and the Volvo undertook usual and some unusual tasks, from road-making duties, delivery of water to communities in times of boil water notice, collecting salt for road maintenance in winter from Carrickfergus and Kennedy Quay, Co.Cork, to the annual run to collect the Westport Town Christmas Tree from Letterkeen Forest.

Today, the mileage showing on the vehicle is 500,013KM, this is after the clock has already gone around once, the true reading of kilometers travelled is in fact 1,500,000 or 932,064 miles. This is equivalent to travelling around the world over 37 times or just short of travelling to the moon and back…twice!

Pictured is the recently retired Ger Tonra

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