Terry Orvad might just be the safest driver in Tamworth.
He’s worked for the Roads and Maritime Services for more than half a century, and he remembers the day he first started, January 16, 1966.
When Random Breath Testing was first introduced, he was there. He’s also got the definitive answer on indicating off a roundabout.
When The Leader asked to talk to Mr Orvad about his longevity in service, he was surprisingly reluctant.
“I don’t believe that you plan to get into a position where you like the work you do, and I absolutely love the work I do – it’s given me incentive,” he said.
“If I didn’t like it I would have left years ago, I could have retired at 60 but I’ve had another 23 years because I enjoy it, why not?”
In his 53 years he’s seen the implementation of 40 kilometre per hour school zones and knows the busiest intersection in town.
He’s worked with 32 different local councils at once, negotiated tough circumstances and shown patience and understanding when it’s needed most.
Reducing the road toll is his first priority, finding solutions that help the community his second.
“But, I have made the decision that I will have Friday of this week as my last working day for Roads and Maritime Services,” he said.
I’ve always been receptive to good advice and if I can give it to myself I’m going to take it.- Terry Orvad
“There’s ambivalence there, there’s a part of me that doesn’t want to go but part of me knows I should.
“I’ve always been receptive to good advice and if I can give it to myself I’m going to take it.”
Subjected to a lot of change in the course of his career, he’s learned to follow it somewhere new.
In the last 50 years he’s driven at least 2.5 million kilometres and he’s never been booked.
“I found the niche I was looking for and I stayed there,” he said.
“I like it, I just enjoy it so much I really do.”
Mr Orvad looks forward to his retirement.
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