Kelly Durkin Trucking is a family business in every sense of the word. Third generation transport operator and farmer, Kelly Durkin, says the story all started back in 1946 when his grandfather purchased his first farm in Thorpedale, Victoria.
“We’re a small family-based farming and agricultural business, with a transport division. We transport produce and general freight Australia-wide. With the produce, we carry the fruit and vegetables we grow on our farms, as well as produce that’s grown on other local farms,” said Kelly.
Today, Kelly Durkin Trucking runs nine B-doubles, predominantly Kenworth T909s, which stand out on the highway in their green and white livery. The business employs around a dozen full-time staff, as well as some casuals, with some long-term employees having worked for the family for more than 30 years.
Kelly Durkin Trucking is run by Kelly and his wife Mandy, his father Mike, and his sister Emma and brother-in-law Matt Steendham. “We’re the directors and run the business’ day-to-day operations. The company is getting a lot bigger but we’re still all pretty hands-on. My father has eight granddaughters, so hopefully they’ll be in the business one day too,” added Kelly.
Not one to shy away from hard work, Kelly is regularly on the road and enjoys being behind the wheel. About 10 years ago, he realised how telematics could assist with maintaining a smooth operation, no matter where he was.
After speaking with Procon Telematics, Kelly Durkin Trucking decided to implement the company’s Fleetlocate Software, using it in the office, but focusing on the app when out on the job. “We’re truck drivers and farmers, not tech-heads, so Procon has been great,” said Kelly. “What I like is the day-to-day access that shows where a vehicle is and how long it’s been there – and you can’t argue with the data. We use the app all the time to look at where our trucks are, to see if our drivers are resting or driving or if they’ve been held up. Through Procon’s technology, Fleetlocate helps us monitor driver fatigue to the minute.
“When I’m out on the road, I can see where our vehicles are and it’s helped with basic things like not calling our drivers when they’re resting, so we’re not waking them up.”
As Kelly has found, the app’s vehicle history function can even help to settle disputes. “Today I needed to know what time something was delivered the Monday just gone. The client was arguing about what time the vehicle left the premises. He said the truck left by 8:00am but I could see that it was still there at 10:00am – and I had the Fleetlocate data there to confirm the facts. So we can see whether anyone is telling porky pies or not,” he said.
Along with location information, Kelly Durkin Trucking has been utilising Fleetlocate’s servicing alerts functionality too. “Through the app, we can add alerts for service intervals on each vehicle. We do a B-service every 30,000 kilometres and our long-term services are all logged at 400,000 kilometres via the app, so it means nothing ever gets missed.
“As time has gone on, the Fleetlocate app has proved to be very handy. The team there is also very accessible, any time of the day, any time of the week.”