A 48-year-old double amputee has been voted New Zealand’s friendliest bus driver.

Stephen Heke, of Papamoa near Tauranga, beat 24 other drivers in the Tranzqual Australasian Bus Roadeo to win the friendliest driver trophy.

“It was me against 24 others and they all had both their legs,” he laughed.

Mr Heke, who uses a prosthetic leg to put his foot on the pedal, aims to take out the overall prize next year.

“I’m not sitting in my wheelchair feeling sorry for myself. There are no bad days in my vocabulary — only good days and better days,” Mr Heke told the Bay of Plenty Times.

Mr Heke’s legs were amputated below the knee due to blood flow restriction and deep vein thrombosis. He has been driving buses only for a year.