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Truckin in the Tropics: Shane Chugg
Shane Chugg Photo Alf Wilson / Big Rigs
FOR the past seven years, Tasmanian truckie Shane Chugg has worked for SeaRoad Logistics.
When Big Rigs saw the 47-year-old beside the Bass Hwy near Latrobe he was driving a Volvo 480.
"I have been a truckie for 30 years and haul general freight around Tasmania," he said.
The happy truckie used to haul goods between Hobart and Devonport and travels mostly around the Shane lives at Spreyton, which is also the home of world-renowned axeman David Foster.
He said the worst roads to drive along were along the west coast and Shane dislikes "idiot car drivers who do unexpected things".
In his spare time Shane likes shooting for deer and barracks for the Essendon Bombers in the AFL.
Marty living truck driver's worst nightmare after crash
MIRACLE ESCAPE: The scene of the fatal truck crash on the Cunningham Hwy at Mutdapilly on August 11.
IT'S what the wife of every truck driver dreads - an unidentified phone call late at night. Marty Barber's wife had to go through the gut-wrenching call from emergency services when he crashed just after 1am at Mutdapilly on the Cunningham Hwy on August 11.
Fortunately Marty was alive and being taken to a Brisbane hospital, but for others the news was much worse.
The driver of the utility that is believed to have swerved into Marty's path did not survive.
Truck driving is Australia's most deadly job, says the Transport Workers' Union.
That statement is backed up by statistics that show Transport Postal and Warehousing tops the list of most dangerous jobs in Australia.
Last year 220 people died in crashes with heavy vehicles.
Truck driver Marty Barber with wife Amanda and his two children Tui, 7, and Amali
More often they are the drivers of cars or their passengers and there is also a percentage of truckies doing their jobs.
Safe Work Australia says around 50 truckies a year are killed and a report last month revealed the transport industry is a priority in the Australian Work Health and Safety Strategy due to historic high rates of fatalities and injuries.
Marty Barber knows all too well how dangerous driving a truck can be.
He is slowly recovering from the crash that could easily have cost him his life.
The Lowood truckie was driving a milk tanker for Blu Logistics when the ute allegedly crossed into his path.
The truck's cab was crushed and the ute was destroyed, taking the life of the driver.
Police told Marty he was not at fault in the crash, that there was evidence he tried to avoid the ute but there was just no room to move.
"It happened so quick, I didn't even think I had time to brake, but the evidence showed I did brake and change direction," he said.
Now he's undergoing counselling to try and get him back to the job he loves, driving trucks.
At the moment he is not allowed or able to drive a car let alone a truck; he still can't carry a bag of shopping or pick up his kids as his chest and legs were injured in the crash and he still has trouble breathing.
Miraculously, he did not break any bones.
"They put me through the CAT scan twice, they couldn't believe nothing was broken," he said.
The crash has been hard on the whole family and devastating for his children aged 7 and 9.
"I want to go back to my job, that's what I do, I drive, but I'm terrified of that prospect at the moment."
Marty praised the company he works for - his boss stayed with him in hospital after the crash and organised a driver to take his wife to her mother's funeral, which was being held the day of the crash.
While he is focussed on recovering his friends have set up a GoFundMe account to raise some money to help the family.
Long-time family friend Katrina Buckley set up the fund, Called Help the Milk Tanker Driver recover, and there's already $800 worth of donations.
Marty said he was stoked and stunned that the fund had been set up. "It's pretty amazing that people put their hands in their pockets for some bloke that they don't know," he said.
Qld truckie convoy set for Sydney
A CONVOY of unionists from Queensland has set off for Sydney as part of a mass protest highlighting the pressure they claim is put on truck drivers to meet dangerous and unreasonable deadlines.
THE Transport Workers Union (TWU) plans to stage a demonstration with more than 700 members in Sydney after delegates from Queensland and South Australia arrive on Thursday.
The convoy will stop at the Gold Coast, Ballina, Coffs Harbour and Newcastle en route to Sydney. The union has taken particular issue with supermarket giant Coles, accusing it of creating an unsafe environment through deadlines set by economic pressure. While TWU Queensland secretary Peter Biagini conceded supermarkets and other major retailers didn't actually employ any trucks or drivers themselves, he argued they put implicit pressure on transport companies to meet unsafe standards to win contracts.
"For them to survive they've got to bow to their clients, which means cutting back on maintenance, pushing the drivers and making sure that the wheels are turning 24 hours, seven days a week," Mr Biagini said. He said this contributed to fatalities on the country's roads. Mr Biagini called for retailers to help craft a more "sustainable" standard for truck drivers by taking responsibility for the risks of these cost-cutting measures. Driver Guillaume Maze said he observed other trucks cutting corners every day by speeding or driving erratically. He said his boss was usually understanding if he failed to meet a deadline but not all workplaces would be as reasonable. Coles has slammed the union for making "deliberately misleading" claims about road safety. "Coles does not employ any truck drivers. It contracts the services of market-leading logistics providers such as Toll and Linfox," it said in a statement.
"Like Coles, these companies put enormous effort into safety measures for their employees and employee safety is their priority." Coles also denied TWU claims it gave donations to any political party and cited analysis by Deloittes that showed the company accounts for around 0.8 per cent of the national road freight task.
World first attempt to improve livestock transport trailer durability
Cattle and sheep trucks traverse some of Australia's roughest terrain, clocking up millions of kilometres, sometimes on terrible roads.
That travel, as well as physically containing the stock, withstanding animal waste and hosing down of crates all contribute to the wear and tear.
Some of the industry's largest players say they are looking at using stainless steel to build the cattle and sheep trailers.
David Byrne's company, Byrne Trailers, at Wagga Wagga in New South Wales, designs trailers.
He said the new designs should be more durable.
"The main point of difference will be the material that the tailers are to be manufactured out of, which is effectively stainless steel. The point of the material is to combat rust and fatigue and increase the life of the equipment," he said.
"It will actually make the crate a little lighter. Because of the high strength stainless that we're using, it'll be a lot lighter in different areas of the trailer."
However, Mr Byrne conceded the new trailers would cost more.
"It is considerably more expensive, but we believe with the deals we've done with certain companies from overseas, especially with the quantity we've had to commit to, we've been able to work with and get a reasonable price at the end of the day," he said.
Ross Fraser operates one of the country's largest trucking businesses, Fraser's Livestock Transport, out of Warwick in southern Queensland.
He said the company operated in some very difficult conditions and that could really knock the trailers about.
He said he hoped that while the initial outlay would be greater, switching to stainless steel would be a great saving in the long run.
"From a maintenance point of view and longevity for the trailers, I think there's some huge advantages," he said.
"I guess it'll take a while for us to find out what that advantage is, but given the rust we've had in our trailers over the last five or six years, we had to do something."
The two new trailers will be built by March 2016.
Jail sentence for dodgy trucking boss a 'wake-up call'
Chain of responsibility consultant says trucking operators should pay attention to the case of Peter Colbert
A 12-year jail sentence for a transport operator boss guilty of manslaughter represents a "scary" new benchmark in penalties for non-compliance, an industry consultant has warned.
The brakes on the truck Brimson was driving failed, causing him to crash, fatally, into a pole.
The Supreme Court of South Australia found Colbert had previously been warned several times about the state of the brakes, but did nothing to address the issue.
SA-based chain of responsibility consultant Roxanne Mysko says the sentence should be a "wake-up call" for other operators.
While the sentence was made in South Australia, she says the regulations are federally recognised and will have national implications: "The benchmark has been made now."
Although Colbert’s transgressions were significant, Mysko says every breach of regulations holds a risk of similar liability if a crash takes place.
"This has been coming for the last five or six years," Mysko says.
"The law is the law, and anyone that hasn’t done the right thing is liable to be ‘in it’."
Along with maintenance, fatigue compliance is one of the biggest regulatory areas where trucking operators are being caught out, Mysko says.
Truck driver plunges Surat into darkness
SURAT citizens were left in the dark on Saturday morning as a truckie passing through town left an unwelcome calling card.
About 7.30am, the truckie was heading north on the Carnarvon Hwy and turning right into Burrowes St in front of the pub when he misjudged the corner and took a clump out of the electricity pole, immediately plunging the town into darkness.
The truckie stopped to assess the damage but finding his truck was relatively unscathed and not realising the extent of the damage to the pole, he continued north towards Roma.
However, an attendant at the service station noted his details and informed police.
Police tracked down the truckie on the highway close to Roma where they took his details.
One of the casualties of the outage was the opening of the Cobb & Co Museum photographic exhibition which was delayed until resourceful volunteers rigged up an emergency generator.
Truckies take a break, free BBQ to talk about fatigue
ROAD SAFETY: Main Roads and Gympie police hosted a road safety stop on the Bruce Hwy at Federal yesterday for Road Safety Week. Pictured is Acting Superintendent Bruce McNab and Main Roads regional director Kellie Hammond.
NORTH-BOUND truckies on their way to Gympie were encouraged to pull over, enjoy a free barbecue and get some advice on how to avoid fatigue yesterday.
The Federal Truckie Toolbox Talk was just one of hundreds of local events and activities being held across the State as part of Queensland's first ever Road Safety Week.
Truckies travelling north made the most of their fatigue break by taking a pit-stop at Federal.
Main Roads and Road Safety Minister Mark Bailey said the Truckie Toolbox Talk was an innovative way to provide truck drivers with important information and tips on avoiding fatigue in a relaxed setting.
"The emphasis of the session is on education and we're hoping this event encourages truckies travelling in the area to stop by and have a chat," he said.
"Fatigue is a particular issue in Queensland, with the vast distances between some towns making it all the more important for drivers to plan their trips, particularly truck drivers who are regularly doing the long hauls.
"Fatigue crashes are usually severe, resulting in serious injury and death, as there is often no attempt to avoid or prevent the crash."
Despite its prevalence, many Queenslanders believe driving tired is just part of life.
A 2015 survey of 3000 Queensland drivers found more than a third of drivers admitted to driving QPS Assistant Commissioner Mike Condon said people needed to be more aware of the signs of fatigue and make a conscious effort to plan their trips to avoid driving tired. They should limit how long they drive for, rest every two hours for at least 15 minutes, and don't drive if tired.
NatRoad 2015: Safety-conscious truckie wins top driver award
Truck drivers Garry McVey and Chloe Rimmington recognised for their efforts.
A flawless driving record over 41 years has helped Garry McVey take out the 2015 NatRoad Professional Driver of the Year Award.
McVey was one of three recipients of an award at this year’s NatRoad conference and was cited for his unblemished record and commitment to vehicle maintenance.
NatRoad says the small fleet operator is committed to passing on his knowledge and skills to others.
"If a young driver is looking to break into the industry, or if a driver wants to return to the trucking industry, Garry will give them a fair go - as long as that person has the right attitude," NatRoad says.
"Garry runs his own business with a small fleet of trucks. He shares his safe driving attitude with others by taking the time to make sure they understand their fatigue management and work diary requirements."
NatRoad says McVey began driving trucks at 18 years of age and has held a perfect driving record since.
"Once it is in your blood it is in your blood," McVey says of the trucking industry.
NatRoad adds that McVey has a strong commitment to vehicle maintenance and ensuring driver welfare is a priority.
"Garry’s policy towards safe driving is that his drivers should always pull over if they feel tired and he will inform his customer if his driver will be late. This means his drivers won’t feel pressured and the customer won’t be let down," NatRoad says.
McVey thanked NatRoad, and his wife for nominating him for the award.
"I’m a bit embarrassed really," he says.
Before walking away with his award, McVey told the conference: "Keep on trucking."
His win puts him in the running to win the top driver award at the 2016 Trucking Australia conference.
Youth Award goes to NQX driver
Fellow truck driver Chloe Rimmington won NatRoad’s Transport Youth Award for 2015.
The 25-year-old Rimmington began working in the trucking industry at 17 as an administration assistant but soon switched to truck driving.
She currently hauls freight for NQX in Mackay, Queensland.
"Chloe’s duties include general freight, mine and shuttle runs, forklift operation and load restraint. By 19, Chloe obtained her HR [heavy rigid] licence and then went on to successfully gain her MC [multi-combination] licence," NatRoad says.
"With these licences under her belt, Chloe was able to achieve her first HC [heavy combination] solo trip from Brisbane to Perth return – a remarkable achievement for a young driver."
Upon receiving the award, Rimmington told the conference her trip to Perth "was the scariest thing I’ve ever done".
She says NQX is an "absolutely fantastic company to work for" and that she is thankful for receiving the award.
"Wow, what an honour," Rimmington says.
NatRoad says Rimmington is an excellent team player at NQX and has a genuine desire to improve the transport industry.
Rimmington does volunteer work in her local community and also volunteered to help rebuild Fiji from a natural disaster that struck the country.
"Australia would be such a better place if more young people shared the same enthusiasm and values as Chloe Rimmington," NatRoad says.
Divall’s Bulk Haulage manager wins Operational Support Award
Meanwhile, the prize for Excellence in Operational Support went to Kerry Sheehan from Divall’s Earthmoving Bulk Haulage.
Sheehan started working for the company in 2008 as a receptionist but quickly became heavily involved in the day-to-day running of Divall’s.
"In 2009 Kerry took the initiative to be heavily involved in the setting up and smooth transition of the MT Data unit, which was installed into the bulk haulage department and its fleet of heavy vehicles," NatRoad says.
"During 2011, Kerry took her role to a new level and became the key player and organiser for Divall’s when the transport manager was involved in a serious incident. Without hesitation, she dealt with the day-to-day running of the department and its associated needs, she was able to secure client confidence, liaise with appropriate personnel and arrange work for the entire fleet of heavy vehicles.
"This undertaking saw Kerry work anywhere in the vicinity of 12-14 hours per day, whilst managing drivers, as well as tending to her own personal matters."
NatRoad says Sheehan now aids in the daily management and organisation of Divall’s fleet and helps with vehicle allocation to meet customer requirements.
"She is also responsible for organising all driver permits and authorisations and ensuring that driver medicals are carried out within specific timeframes," NatRoad says.
"Kerry’s commitment to Divall’s can only be described as impressive. She is an outstanding employee and a worthy recipient of the NatRoad Award for Excellence in Operational Support for 2015."
The awards were held on the second day of NatRoad's 2015 conference, which ran from August 13 to 15 in Brisbane.
Mills' heartbreak at truck company closure
Kelvin Mills and Nick Ciani, at the Murwillumbah depot today.
THE MILLS family has revealed the heartbreak behind their decision to close the iconic Northern Rivers family business, after 91 years.
On Friday Mills Transport gave more than 100 workers at its Lismore, Coffs Harbour, Brisbane, Sydney, Harwood and Murwillumbah truck depots five weeks notice.
An emotional Tracey Mills said pressures on the trucking industry to cut corners on safety and work entitlements contributed to the company's inability to compete with cheap freight providers.
In keeping with the family values of the company, Ms Mills said the board, including her sister Leonie, father Reg and uncle Kelvin, wanted to find jobs for their workers who will be made redundant.
"We wanted to make sure we gave our customers enough time to transition them to a new carrier, and in doing that we could create new job opportunities," Ms Mills said.
"They're all disappointed - they're loyal, good employees, and from what we've kept here, a lot will get jobs," Kelvin Mills said.
Ms Mills said closing Mills Transport was a tough strategic decision.
They did not want their workers to have to fight for their entitlements, if the company was forced into administration.
"We were also hoping to co-ordinate (the closure) with a busy time, which for the transport industry is October to Christmas."
While Reg and Kelvin will retire, she and her sister will also have to look for jobs.
"We both have young families. Once we get through this process of closing, hopefully with grace, we can go get a job in the local area and support our families."
Ms Mills said the next "challenge" lay in disposing of the company's six depots and 85 trucks. No interest has been shown in the assets by competitors so far.
In Murwillumbah the Buchanan St depot has moved the region's once top produce including sugar cane, bananas, dairy and mineral sand (from sand mining).
Murwillumbah director Kelvin Mills was overcome with emotion today, unable to put into words his distress at the company's closure.
But he did say the company bucked industry trends in the interest of its staff only to be undercut by cheaper, quicker freight services.
"It's hard to be competitive when people are cutting corners," Mr Mills said.
"Some don't meet mandatory fatigue management laws, others don't pay their super, or the rate of pay," he said.
The company had a GPS which tracked trucks. If they went over 100km per hour, managers were alerted by email.
If a truckie was too sick to finish a scheduled delivery, he would be sent home to get well, instead of being "re-slotted".
"We weren't prepared to make short cuts to meet the market for road transport. That wasn't who we were," Ms Mills said.
$2000 fine for blowing four times the legal limit
A TRUCK driver who blew nearly four times the legal limit after crashing his truck off the Bruce Highway near Myrtlevale has been fined $2000 and disqualified from driving for 15 months.
The court heard how police were called to an accident at 9.40pm on Friday August 7 after a truck towing a trailer ran off the road, drove over a concrete culvert and came to a rest on the train line.
The truck only received a broken fuel line, and a flat front tyre.
Police prosecutor Sergeant Mick Whitty said police spoke with the driver, Gregory John McRae, who told them he'd drunk two cans of VB after his truck ran off the road, which another man had given him.
McRae further stated that before the accident occurred he'd not drunk alcohol since the previous evening, although police noted McRae smelled of liquor and had bloodshot eyes.
After exiting his truck to be transported to Whitsunday station, McRae grabbed another can of VB and took a drink.
At 10.49pm, nearly an hour after the crash, McRae produced a blood alcohol reading of 0.197.
The court heard how since the incident, McRae had lost his job as a truck driver but was reinstated in a different role within the same company.
"You've taken some action to address any issues you might have with alcohol, haven't you?" asked Magistrate Ron Muirhead.
"I've realised I have some issues with alcohol," McRae said.
Magistrate Muirhead noted McRae's reading was "getting up towards four times the legal limit."
"I understand that, Your Honour," McRae replied.
During sentencing, Magistrate Muirhead said the severe nature of McRae's penalty was due to the "very high reading of 0.197."
Transport workers warn unsafe driving a cause for concern
ALL ABOARD: TWU activists about to get on the bus taking them on a protest trip down the coast this week. The activists protested outside Coles.
A UNION representing truck drivers is taking its protest against unsafe driving practices to the streets.
Yesterday Transport Workers' Union activists protesting against the high death toll in trucking visited Grafton on their way to a union conference in Sydney.
The group will hold protests throughout northern NSW in particular, pointing the finger at wealthy retailers. The union is protesting against practices like "sweating" truckies - forcing them to drive beyond safe fatigue levels.
The squeeze on transport by wealthy retailers was highlighted in a recent survey by Safe Work Australia which showed 20% of transport industry employers break safety rules to meet deadlines - this compares with just 6% in other industries.
"Major retailers like Coles are squeezing transport companies and drivers by continually driving down transport costs. This leads to around 330 deaths a year in truck related crashes and thousands of injuries. It is the reason why trucking is Australia's deadliest profession with truck drivers 15 times more likely to die than any other profession," said TWU national secretary Tony Sheldon.
Coles is campaigning against road safety watchdog, the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal. The TWU said Coles - which it was announced last week has revenues of $38?billion - had donated $2.1?million to the Liberal Party, which has signalled its plan to scrap the tribunal.
Freight industry defends record
THE road freight transport industry has criticised the findings of a Safe Work Australia survey that says 20 per cent of trucking operators break safety rules to complete work on time.
The survey by the statutory authority, released in July, paints a bleak picture of safety compliance in the trucking industry.
It identifies significant gaps between employers and employees in attitudes towards safety. It says workers have less faith than employers in workplace health and safety practices, with Safe Work Australia also saying that "to some degree pressure from management stops workers from following safety practices". But Victorian Transport Association chief executive Peter Anderson says the survey "lacks depth and is very shallow".
The long haul and overnight sector of the road transport industry is heavily regulated by government.
The majority of commercial road transport is in suburban metropolitan or regional areas and these are not governed by the same laws that apply to the long-haul sector, Anderson says.
"There are all sorts of sectors of the transport industry that are not covered in any context in this survey," he says.
"It doesn't hold much weight with me. They have over-emphasised the risk within an industry that has not only worked very hard to improve its image but has embraced a path of continual improvement with safety."
The survey report found evidence of a culture that accepted risky behaviour to get the job done as quickly as possible. It says this culture probably contributes to the high rate of deaths and injuries with road transport.
"The higher acceptance of risk-taking and rule-breaking in the transport industry compared to other industries is concerning.
These may be key factors driving the high levels of injuries and fatalities," it says. "The findings suggest that workplace conditions and to some degree pressure from management stops workers from following safety practices, highlighting work design as a problem."
Truck drivers have the highest exposure of all industries to hazardous gases and dust, fumes, sun, loud noise and vibration, the survey found.
Injuries, including sprains, strains and joint and muscle problems, were also more common among transport workers.
More transport workers die each year than in any other industry, Safe Work figures show.
Of 184 workplace deaths in Australia in 2014, 48 were in the transport sector. Only agriculture, forestry and fishing, with 46 fatalities, had a comparable death rate.
Anderson says the report relies on anecdotal responses and is based on survey responses from too small a sample of operators.
Road transport is subject to widespread "chain of responsibility" rules under state and federal laws, which are being reviewed by the National Transport Commission.
The head of the Australian Trucking Association, Christopher Melham, says the chain of responsibility (CoR) legislation should be streamlined and safety prioritised through the introduction of a general duty that applies to trucking operators, consignors and all other chain parties.
Melham says a problem with the current legislation is the way chain of responsibility duty statements attempt to prescribe exactly how businesses must operate. He says this discourages innovation and creates red tape.
"Best-practice safety legislation uses primary or general duties to outline the scope of a business's responsibilities, and allows businesses to develop their own procedures to meet these standards," he says. "As such, we recommend that a general safety duty is developed to apply to all chain of responsibility parties.
"This approach would improve safety, because CoR parties would have to consider their operations as a whole, rather than ticking off compliance boxes. The obligations on businesses and staff would be clear, instead of hidden in concepts like deemed liability."
Melham says the introduction of general duties would also open the way for numerous complex, duplicated and overlapping provisions to be removed from the Heavy Vehicle National Law. This will provide red tape reduction benefits for industry, regulators and the courts, he argues.
The road freight transport industry dominates Australia's non-bulk freight market, mainly because it can leverage advantages in price, speed, convenience and reliability. The industry's largest vehicles transport goods between and across states, competing successfully with the rail freight, water freight and air freight industries.
Youthful livestock trucking in the West
Liam Fyfe is a young third generation truckie who’s recently started in business for himself
Who said the younger generation these days isn’t prepared to have a go?
After driving for the family trucking company in rural WA since he was 19, Liam Fyfe is now striking out on his own.
Liam, 25, has recently bought a new Kenworth T659 prime mover, and wants to add a set of livestock trailers as soon as possible.
He’s called his company "Fyfe Logistics", which implies bigger things down the road. For the moment though, he’s working as a tow contractor to his parents’ company, Fyfe Transport, which specialises in sheep and grain.
Liam reckons he’s got it a lot better than when David and Christine Fyfe started their company nearly 30 years ago at Lake Grace, 350 kilometres south east of Perth.
"Loans are easier to get and work is easier to get," Liam says of livestock cartage. "No-one wants to do it. No one wants to do hard work."
Liam’s T659 has notched up nearly 13,000 kilometres and had its first service at CJD Bunbury.
He specified a Cummins ISX rated at 550hp (400kW) with SCR (selective catalytic reduction) emissions control – ie using AdBlue. The bunk is a big 50-incher.
"It’s really good," says Liam of his new truck. "It’s really comfortable, good to sleep in, runs nice and cool compared with the older motors."
Liam favoured the 659 over a 909 because of better vision in the city with the sloping bonnet; and easier reversing and better manoeuvrability in the numerous customer tight spots thanks to the set-back front axle.
Trucks are all Liam’s known, and all he’s been interested in.
"Ever since I could reach the pedals I’ve been driving, that’s just what I wanted to do," he says.
"I think I got my first truck when I was three years old, and I think my first load was a load of sand to the garden bed in the backyard. I did a few miles on my knees with that truck."
Liam’s got a competitive streak, no doubt sharpened by arguing with younger brother Nathan – the Fremantle Dockers AFL player – over whose turn it was to ride with David in the truck, and competing with Nathan on who could do things faster.
"We would see who could tarp the quickest, tie the ropes the quickest, and who could back a road train in the least amount of shots," Liam says. "We would set challenges for each other, it was pretty fun.
"We would knock off from school, and everyone else would be hanging around with mates or down at the ice cream shop or whatever, but we would be down at the yard running amok annoying drivers. We just loved it".
Needless to say Liam can do any maintenance work on trucks and trailers other than fiddling with the injectors or motor.
He anticipates that in the longer term he’ll slip into the management side of things with the family business, as David scales back.
Truckin in the Tropics: Peter Smith
WHEN you live at a scenic place by the sea like Cardwell in north Queensland, you are sure to be a happy truckie.
That is the case of 33-year-old Peter Smith, who Big Rigs saw parking his Kenworth there on June 27 where he had a bit to eat.
After he had received his food at the cafe by the water, Big Rigs asked Peter if it would be possible to snap his pic beside the Kenworth and he agreed.
"It is a great place to live and the food here is tops and the girls are very friendly," he said.
Peter works for Millennium Haulage and when off work he goes fishing near Cardwell in the plentiful waters of the Hinchinbrook Channel.
"I catch sharks big and small, Barramundi and Fingermark," he said.
Peter rates the Bruce Hwy between Mackay and Brisbane as the worst he travels on.
"Especially along the Marlborough stretch," he said.
Crash truckie trapped for two hours
Firefighters have taken more than two hours to free a truck driver trapped after a roll-over this morning.
The 66-year-old driver was headed east on Gnangara Road in Landsdale at about 11am when his truck failed to negotiate a roundabout and tipped on its side.
He was trapped inside the truck's cabin for almost two hours as rescuers worked to cut him free.
Picture: Blake Johnson/7 News
Police say he has only minor injuries and was taken to hospital for a checkup.
The truck was carrying about 36,000 litres of molasses mixed with water which is used as a dust suppressant.
Parts of Gnangara Road and Hartman Drive remained closed this afternoon.