For the past 10 years, Stuart Abbott has driven for Milthorpe Transport. The 54-year-old has been a truckie for 24 years. When he chatted with Big Rigs, he was tending to his trailers near Townsville.
Abbott is based at Corowa in NSW and was driving a 2018 Western Star.
“I have general goods from Melbourne and am heading for Cairns,” he said.
When asked if there were enough rest areas for drivers, Abbott said there was.
“One positive thing is that there are blue signs beside highways advising where the next rest areas are and that helps us plan where we will stop on trips,” he said.
Experienced Abbott rates the Gregory Development Road between Clermont and Charters Towers as amongst the worst he travels on. “The speed limit on some parts is 80km/h,” he said.
Between 1990 and 1995 Abbott served in the Australian Army, where he drove many vehicles and acquired the necessary licenses.
I asked him what the best part of his job was, to which he replied, “I get to see so much of this big country. Two days ago I was in Melbourne and now I am in Townsville.”
As we yarned I noticed thousands of dead insects on the front of his truck. “There were so many insects on the Newell Highway at West Wyalong because of all the water,” he said.
Abbott barracks for the St Kilda Saints in the AFL and the struggling West Tigers in the rival NRL.