Have you ever wondered just who is delivering the fuel to your house? Who is that masked man, bundled up in the blistering cold, charged with the responsibility of bringing heating oil to the residents, schools, and small businesses of the Metrowest area? At Jamie Oil, quite often the oil truck driver is an off-duty or retired employee of one of our local fire departments.
"It's not a job for just anybody; keeping America warm is serious business," said Jerry Bradley, a Framingham resident and Jamie Oil driver since 1988. Bradley and three other current and former firefighters deliver the goods for JOC. When they get time off from the station, firefighters often drive oil delivery trucks in the winter to supplement their incomes. Their season often begins in November and runs through early April, when many firefighters then work as landscapers or construction workers after the weather breaks.
Along with Bradley, Jamie Oil employs Paul King, a lifelong Saxonville resident, Ron Connors, of Holliston, and Vinnie Arena of Hopedale; the latter two are retired lieutenants in the towns of Framingham and Milford respectively. King has delivered oil for fifteen years, Arena for twenty-two years, and Connors has braved the New England cold for twenty-eight years behind the wheel of an oil truck.
"For the most part, the drivers deliver in the neighborhoods they know best, in the town they grew up in," offers Michelle Daley, manager of the oil department. "We deliver to houses where I used to play in their backyards in second grade. Quite often, I deliver to my relatives, old friends, and people who attend my family's church," said King.
"As firefighters, we understand the importance of safety and Jamie Oil runs the newest and safest fleet in the state," states Arena. "You show me a firefighter, and I'll show you somebody that wants his truck to be in top condition," offers Connors. "We inspect our trucks daily, and if anything is wrong, we use another truck until it's repaired."
"We are very fortunate to have such hard workers," said Jamie Oil President, Tom Carey. "They are dedicated to their work and their families. They know that a lot of things could go wrong if we don't use good judgment. It is a pleasure to work with them."
According to Jamie Oil General Manager, Rick Auen, who has over thirty years of experience managing trucks and drivers, "The bottom line is that we are committed to doing things right, and the best drivers want to do it right, too."
The next time an oil truck pulls up to your house, the driver may be an off-duty fireman from your local neighborhood, who is well trained and experienced at what he is doing. "I get a good feeling knowing that we have such great guys driving those thirty-thousand pound trucks," said Carey. "Safety is everything."