Inducted into the Shell Rimula Wall of Fame at ReUnion 2014.
John Daniel, known as Lofty (or JD) to his mates, has spent the last 32 years of his life in the transport industry. He initially started as a 19 year-old with Clintons Transport of Burragorang Valley carting coal to Port Kembla. Four years later Lofty moved to Sam Fax coal where he worked for three years before deciding he wanted to cart linehaul. He bought an International truck in 1962 to sub-contract to IPEC hauling between Sydney and Brisbane. He loved the life.
An accident in 1964 just north of Tenterfield, on the New England Highway, caused quite a bit of damage to the truck and a year later Lofty traded the International for a Perkins powered Commer. By 1967 he was driving a seven tonne Commer. Three years later he became an IPEC company driver. He thought he was on top dollar! A Sydney to Brisbane trip paid $50 at the time. Lofty illustrated his ability as a driver when taking trips from Sydney to Melbourne or Adelaide trips. Lofty was able to drive any make or model they wanted him to and these included a prototype 7215 MAN, several Internationals, a Commer and even a twin steer Kenworth.
In 1971, while a passenger, Lofty was in an accident breaking a bone in his arm that went undetected for nine years. During this time he continued to drive with a lump on the side of his arm affectionately christened his 'flipper'. During his time with IPEC, Lofty was a well known regular on the 'Old Putty Road' when most of it was little more than a dirt track but enforcement was tough. Lofty recalls getting his very first fine on 11 August 1970 in Rouse Street, Tenterfield. The $10 fine was for not carrying his log book.
One of Lofty's more distinctive traits was when the uniforms at IPEC were a pair of white overalls. Lofty would arrive in Brisbane with them still in their pristine white condition when most other drivers would arrive looking like they had been dragged through the exhaust pipe with hardly a white patch to be found. In 1987 after 32 years on the road Lofty retired from the trucking industry and relocated his wife Zandra and family to the Sunshine Coast in Queensland where they still reside today.