Winner Of UKIFDA Driver Of The Year Award 2021 Revealed

Published On : 08 Jul 2021

On the first day of UKIFDA EXPO and Future Fuels Conference, the winner of this year’s prestigious UK and Ireland Fuel Distributors Association (UKIFDA) Driver of the Year Award 2021 has been revealed and the winning hero tanker driver is Sean Hewitt of Watson Fuels.

Sponsored for the 20th consecutive year by OAMPS – the specialist insurance advisor to the hazardous fuels and environmental industries - the annual competition aims to find the driver who has really excelled during the past year, going above and beyond the call of duty for customers and in their approach to work.

Sean secured the award and beat off his competitors after coming to the aid of a lady motorist whose car was on fire when he was out delivering fuel one day, during the middle of the pandemic, in May 2020, and is the worthy winner of the UKIFDA Driver of the Year Award 2021.

Watson Fuels Operations Manager, Julian Mellor explains: “We are so proud of Sean and all he does on a daily basis to make sure customers are happy and have the fuel they need – but are completely blown away by the selfless behaviour he demonstrated on Friday 29th May 2020 when out on deliveries from our Wisbech depot.

“He spotted a woman waiting by her car and that her car was on fire. He pulled his tanker over and used one of the fire extinguishers onboard his vehicle to help put the flames out.

“The woman was relieved to be getting help from a stranger who stopped the fire from escalating and as a result of his actions, the danger to those nearby was greatly reduced before the fire brigade could arrive.

“The most impressive thing about this day is that it is just one of many for Sean – since joining Watson Fuels in June 2013 he has worked hard to be the best at what he does and has become an extremely experienced delivery driver who draws on his knowledge to support his colleagues and those around him.

“Not only does he work long hours every winter to ensure our domestic customers have the fuel they need to stay warm and well but he often works beyond his role to support our Wisbech depot customer services team, lending a hand whenever needed to make sure the customers receive the best possible experience.

“Well done, Sean! You more than deserve this award.”

Ken Cronin, UKIFDA Chief Executive, comments: “The past 18 months have been challenging for all of us – and the liquid fuels distribution industry is no exception as our members have continued to deliver vital fuels to homes and businesses regardless of the pandemic and savage winter months – and it's a joy to read of so many drivers going the extra mile to ensure their customers have the fuel they need to stay warm and safe.

“We want to wish this year’s winner, Sean Hewitt, a massive congratulations from all of us at UKIFDA but also say a big well done to all the finalists. You should all be extremely proud of yourselves.”

Held virtually for the first time in its 40-year history, UKIFDA EXPO 2021 has taken place across two days – 7th and 8th July – and Sean was awarded his prize for being the Driver of the Year on day one of the exhibition and Future Fuels conference, by UKIFDA President Janet Kettlewell.

The Driver of the Year Award is now in its 20th year and grows in popularity with each passing year, with more and more nominations submitted by UKIFDA Member companies for their tanker drivers. Only one entry per depot is allowed and the driver needs to have been employed for 12 months and have had no incidents within a 12-month period, including no accidents and spillages.

Karl Jones, Account Director at award sponsors OAMPS Hazardous Industries, comments: “Sean is a shining example of why we set up  the Driver of the Year Award 20 years ago – to encourage safe and efficient driving and recognise those who have delivered outstanding customer care.

“The standard of the winning driver is always incredible – and this year is no exception. We’re very impressed by Sean and the runners-up, and are proud to be sponsors of this highly-respected award once again.”

As Driver of the Year Award winner, Sean received his award together with £1,000 prize money and a certificate and runners-up Joe Williams of Dice Fuels and Errol Griffiths of Oil 4 Wales each received £250.

To find out more about UKIFDA and the Driver of the Year Award, visit

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